Principles of Creative Thinking


Dr KK Aggarwal, Group Editor-in-Chief IJCP Group    11 January 2018

  • Intended information: Having an intention to create something is the first step. This can be illustrated by the first three avatars of Vishnu.
  1. Be like the fish, Vishnu’s first incarnation (Matsya avatar); a fish can swim against the tide, which indicates that one should acquire the quality of taking independent decisions and not just follow what others say. Do not believe in mass imitation or herd mentality. Learn to be different from others.
  2. The second Tortoise (Kurma Avatar) advocates learning the quality of “when to say no” or “when to withdraw completely” from a situation.
  3. The third (Varaha Avatar) or the Boar depicts the quality of not accepting defeat, even at the cost of his life. The boar symbolizes persistence.
  4. These three avatars together teach us that once one has learned the qualities of taking independent decisions and when to withdraw, the next step is to learn that withdrawal should not be permanent. Wait for the right opportunity and stay committed till the goal is achieved.
  5. The lion or the Narsingha Avatar shows that nothing is impossible on earth. This means even while you are persistent in your efforts, you should also have the conviction that everything is possible on this earth.
  • Information gathering: Decide to do it and listen to all to collect information. The big ears of Ganesha denote the importance of listening ‘without bias’.
  • Information reshuffling is the next step. Be like the Swan. To acquire knowledge from all the information gathered, learn the power of discrimination or wisdom or vivek. Exercise good judgement to keep/retain what is good.
  • The “incubation period” then follows. Do something to relax your mind. Remove all your distractions to be creative. Do mind-body relaxation exercises. Shift your state of mind from the sympathetic to the parasympathetic state.
  • In the sympathetic state, heart rate and blood pressure increase and a person cannot take correct and decisive decision. The parasympathetic mode is the relaxed mind state of the body, which is healing and is evident by reduction in heart rate, blood pressure. Flow of thought increases in a relaxed mind.
  • Then you have an “insight” or flow of ideas i.e., what your consciousness tells you may be the right path or direction for you leading to creative “inspiration”.
  • Inspiration motivates action and then you start “implementing” and your creative ideas come to fruition.

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