What happened to our creativity?
After returning from work and school, a son asks his father what he was doing all day. The father, an art teacher, responds ‘I was teaching people how to draw’.
The son looks up surprised and asks: ‘when did they forget?’ So when and why do so many of us forget? A study conducted by Howard Gardner’s project Zero at Harvard involved developing intelligence tests for babies, along with testing older subjects. They found that ‘up to the age of four, almost all the children were at the genius level, in terms of the multiple frames of intelligence that Gardner talks about – spatial, kinaesthetic, musical, interpersonal, mathematical, intrapersonal and linguistic.’ But by the age of twenty the percentage of children at genius level was down to 10 %, and once over twenty, down to 2%!
The genius is covered over by the Voice of Judgment. (you can’t do that, you are not clever enough, not liked enough, not good enough, it would never work etc etc) Suspension of judgment, is about being in a position where we can ‘see our seeing’, or be the observer of our thoughts. This leaves us open to what might emerge. Have you wanted to sing, paint, dance or create in other ways but felt unable to?
What were you thinking that stopped you? Michael Ray who is a creator of creativity courses at Stanford Business School starts all courses with three assumptions:
- Creativity is essential for health, happiness and success in all areas of life, including business.
- Creativity is within everyone.
Even though creativity is within everyone it is often covered over by the Voice of Judgment.