Will the Digital Age Destroy Creativity?


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Will the Digital Age Destroy Creativity?

Solitude makes it possible for us to gain access to our most inner reality. Through solitude we find the ability to sort out the structure of our thoughts, to gain access to the meaning of our ideas and attitudes. Solitude provides access to our imagination.

Imagination and reason are the aspects of the embodied mind, which, in levels of sophistication, sets our species off from our nearest non-human species. It is imagination that provides man with the flexibility to adjust to a changing environment but it is imagination that also robs man of contentment.

Our non-human ancestors are guided by instinct alone. Instinct is the impulse that determines the behavior in a pre-programmed response. But our species has added to this survival response system a high level of imagination, which allows us to fit into a changing environment for survival. Reason and imagination determines the destiny of the species. Discontentment, bred by imagination, motivates man to seek a different way; reason facilitates the change by offering the options for change. The discontent of imagination is the catalyst for adaptation.

The product of imagination can become either reality or fantasy. Fantasy can provide an escape from reality or, as is evident in our accomplishments of science and the arts, it provides the ingredients for new ideas, which like the theories of Newton and Einstein establish the paradigms for technology.

Freud wrote, in his paper Creative Writers and Day-Dreaming, “We may lay it down that a happy person never phantasies, only an unsatisfied one. The motive forces of phantasies are unsatisfied wishes, and every single phantasy is the fulfillment of a wish, a correction of an unsatisfied reality.” Critical Thinking, i.e. evaluative thinking not negative thinking, makes a correction of an unsatisfactory reality possible.

Freud considered fantasy was an escapist practice, a turning away from reality rather than a confrontation with reality in attempted change. He considered fantasy as a derivative of play; the child, in growing older, turned from fantasy focused upon an object to castles in the air. Freud theorized that the pleasure principle was replaced by the reality principle.

Present day psychology considers that fantasy is part of our biological endowment and that the discrepancy between our inner world and our outer world compels man to become inventive thereby leading to an active imagination. Imagination is the attempt to bridge the inner world and the outer world of man. Imagination is the engine of play.

Goya wrote “Phantasy abandoned by reason produces impossible monsters; united with her, she is the mother of the arts and the origin of their marvels.”

Do you often seek solitude?

In our Digital Age is solitude possible for young people?

Will the Digital Age destroy solitude and thus inhibit imagination and thus creativity?