Creative and Logical Thinking
Dr. Mohd Zaidi b. Ismail. Fellow Kanan .22/07/2008
Thinking, being an epistemic act, is an integral cognitive component of science. Since expanding the frontiers of human knowledge is one of the main concerns in science, creativity as a phenomenon of thinking is a subject which has drawn the attention of many researchers.
In a number of attempts to account for creative thinking, one often finds it being primarily contrasted with logical thinking.At the popular level, one is easily confronted with the belief that the human brain is divided, its left cerebral hemisphere is logical, and its right is creative.
In terms of results, logic is sometimes equated with the expected, though somewhat delayed, while creativity, with the unexpected.In terms of process, logic is often depicted as being discursive, analytical and pedantic whereas creativity is imaginative, intuitive and holistic.
Or to somewhat appropriate the nomenclature popularized by such philosophers-scientists as Reichenbach and Popper, logic and creativity are two largely independent and distinct psychological processes, the former concerns the context of justification, and the latter, the context of discovery.
Reading some of those accounts may tempt one to entertain the idea that these two kinds, or modes, of thinking are mutually exclusive, acting like two contradictories which cannot both be true at the same time nor be simultaneously false.But are they that exclusive? Are both two non-overlapping categories of thinking?
We have had several occasions before to explain that thinking is “the mental act of (1) putting into meaningful order (2) what one has already known in order to (3) attain what one is still ignorant of.”
It is clear that there are three central and constitutive elements embedded in such a description. One constituent, indicated by (2) above, is the units of knowledge already in one’s possession-what one already knows-which is regarded as the “material,” or “matter,” of thinking.
Another constituent, indicated by (1), is the way one mentally organizes those units of knowledge resulting in certain mental patterns, certain arrangements. It is the way one mentally relates one unit with another unit, or a group of other units of knowledge, in such a manner to allow for new units of knowledge to become manifest.
This second constituent of thinking is thus considered to be the “form,” or “structure,” of thinking.
The third constituent represents the mental progress, indicated by (3) above, which is the successful movement of one’s mind to new units of knowledge (such as deriving right conclusions or making correct inferences or forming new ideas) after the first and second constituents above have been obtained.
In short, thinking is like one putting the right form to the right material so that one will arrive at the right product or result. As such, defects in thinking may well be due to the defects in its material or its form, or to flaws in both.If such is how thinking is understood and formulated, in what way is logical and creative thinking different from each other?
And how, if at all, are they related to each other?Perhaps, one may explain them in terms of the manner one focuses on the result; should one be more concerned with the novelty of and in (3) above, then one is focused more on creativity; but if one is more preoccupied with the correctness or validity of and in (3) above, then one is focused more on logic.
Yet, one may want to be concerned with the novelty of and in (3) above as well as its correctness and validity; in such a case, at once one deals with both logic and creativity.
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** i open up new section.. yeah.. english section.. so, i’ll upgrade and add my grammer vovabulary lah..ehehe..
think out side the bOx (“_)