“It’s not the pieces, it’s the puzzle.”-Gump
“Research doesn’t teach us anything, it confirms what we already know.”
There are 2 ways to process information:
The researcher model:
the particular, which requires rote memorization and we forget. We try to remember what we learned about X. Statistics is an example. People get caught up on studies, which contradict themselves all of the time, because they haven’t developed their inherent natural ability to intuit and trust their own thinking processes. In school we are taught subjects in isolation, we do not learn how to synthesize all of the information into one unifying whole. Didactic (the scholastic model) was developed in the 13th century by Thomas Aquinas, who developed the university educational system, it’s flawed!
the universal/metaphorical, which fits new information into an existing integrated critical thinking apparatus, for instantaneous comprehension. Goethe, who has mentored (through his works) the greatest minds since his own, taught integration and synthesis, not the particular and the specific.
Einstein put the pieces together that genius specialists discovered (Gauss, Planck, Maxwell, Hilbert, Hamilton, Cantor, etc..), he was domain general (he saw the puzzle), they were domain specific (they discovered the pieces). Many of the specialists would score higher on IQ tests than Einstein, but only he saw where the next piece fit together. It’s a skill and a way of viewing things, not necessarily genetic.
My educational theory focuses on the second mode (Theorist), not remembering facts and what we know or taught, but learning how to think. By studying the most fundamental things, like how the universe came to be, human nature, nature and systems, we can all easily intuit the puzzle and not get caught up on the pieces, that seem to befuddle so many.
There is a physical example for every abstract mental process. It’s all about understanding the systems in which we are all bathed in. When we learn how to think, we can think for ourselves, and it’s fun!
Trusting in our ability to synthesize information provides us with enormous amounts of confidence and allows us to think in metaphors naturally. We no longer wonder how did he do it, we think I see how he came to that understanding.
Dr. Anthony J. Newkirk