One's personality is both a composition and reflection, but if I have to choose one of them, I will choose reflection as the "self" is more important to me than "me". One's composition may change, walking across the cultural landscapes and climbing the social ladder but one's self is tied to one's reflections. The fun part is that reflections are not bound to "Time-Space" barriers ( it is not time-space) and respective mental constructs, which have grown so thick over ages, that they had reduced the image of humans to Sisyphus, rolling different sizes of boulders on hills of different heights.… As the name of this Blog indicates, knols are my perspectives on topics of interests, sweet/bitter experiences or just doodling :)

Monday, November 28, 2011

Higher imagination paradox

“Imagination is more important than knowledge” said Einstein. It is the source of inspiration for some teachers which understand how the minds respond to the learning projects and designs but most can’t realize it as they persists that, knowledge is more important for them than imaginations of their students. It is these two opposite approaches that create the paradox. Certainly the knowledge that are the result of the works of established scholars through centuries are more worthy than the unreliable imaginations of the students that most are rediscovering what already have been discovered but still there are students undiscovered who will become established scholars who will change both the nature of knowledge and the course of the knowledge seeking.

A child becomes interested in compass when equipped with conventional knowledge become uneasy with the established knowledge of the established scholars. He interwoven the time and space in mesh work and opened the door for other imaginations. People inspired by these imaginations started imagining about the time travel in a then imaginative looking space. Time travel paradoxes rose. Black holes, black matters rose in face of the old universe and universe start expanding. All these imaginations were shaping the nature and course of knowledge.

Inspired from the imaginations of Einstein another child imagined another amazing possibility. He imagined of possibility of explaining all processes of nature in one inch long equation. He attached himself to radical imagination that nature is composed of strings so the string theory entered into physics which have surprised both physicists and scholars attached with other disciplines.

We put a lot of examples that first looked radical and not matching with established sets of knowledge but later on changed the course of thinking and perception of reality. The important point is the way we looking to knowledge and the way it constructed. The constructivism philosophy that we have based on our learning methods are designed and aimed to involve students in ways the knowledge is constructed and hence to produce new generations of students that construct new sets of knowledge and hence sustain the course of progress of knowledge and societies in which we live in.

My personal experience both as student and teacher fits with higher imagination paradox. When teachers value too much the conventional and established knowledge the students lose confidence in their imaginations. They felt difficulty both in understanding as well establishing their own personal point of view on the issues. On contrary, when teachers value the imaginations of the students and encourage them to challenge the established knowledge as well construct their own solutions to present problems of the world then the student gain confidence and start thinking seriously the problems. Once the problems become the personal problems of students by inclusions of their imaginations they will take personally as part of their long life processes.

Student’s imaginations may be higher not only than his teachers but also than the established knowledge of the time. The imagination of this particular student has to cope with established knowledge and their representatives to make his place in the world of knowledge but it is problematic for teachers. How to value the imaginations of students against established knowledge as well as how measure the value of the imaginations.

The scientific mechanism is the best measure and tests for the corrections of imaginations but they can’t work in identifying the valuable imaginations. Every radical and totally new imagination requires creating tools for its workability and proving. It is the core problem that the teachers have to understand once they encounter the higher imaginative students. The teachers have to help students in developing their own tools for their radical imaginations. A theoretical physicist will need new sets of mathematics as his tools to prove and shape his imaginations into a theory in which nature could be explained better than existing theories.

A student in humanities will require a strong knowledge of the structure of society both in present world as well as their developments through history. They have to know the key problems and coming problems so they could develop their own tools for imaginative engineering of societies and by comparing their engineered and designed solutions to the structures of the existing problems.


There are two very important points that teachers have to note while they help students to construct their own knowledge.

1- Value the student’s imaginations that they become confident in challenging established knowledge.

2- Once a student with signs of higher imaginations is discovered, it is the responsibility of his teachers to help him build the tools for making his imaginations, reality.

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