"Genius is in-born, may it never be still-born."

"Oysters, irritated by grains of sand, give birth to pearls. Brains, irritated by curiosity, give birth to ideas."

"Brainpower is the bridge to the future; it is what transports you from wishful thinking to willful doing."

"Unless you keep learning & growing, the status quo has no status."

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


Our intellectual blueprint is as individual as a fingerprint.

Most of us think in pictures. Imagine the input of the spatial brain into such a process? Some of the greatest thinkers of all time were visual thinkers. Einstein is a prime example of a visual thinker blessed with supreme Spatial Intelligence.

Spatial Intelligence is our overall intelligence which deals with the visual information (images, symbols, maps, plans, etc) that is almost always a major part of all data the brain processes . . . such as the ability to recognise an object when it is seen from different positions, the ability to imagine movement or internal displacement along the parts of a configuration, the ability to retain configurations and the ability to transform these configurations.

Central to this intelligence are the capabilities to perceive the visual world accurately - encode visual stimuli and to perform transformations and modifications upon one’s initial perceptions - mental manipulation.

One also needs to be able to recreate aspects of one’s visual experience, even in the absence of relevant physical stimuli.

‘The words of language, as they are written and spoken, do not seem to play any role in my mechanism of thought.’

~ Albert Einstein;

Many educators have largely ignored the need for visualisation skills, but researchers have identified almost 100 different careers where spatial visualisation skills are essential for success.

It is within spatial intelligence that Psychologist Howard Gardner locates the “ability to discern similarities across diverse domains.”

He praises Lewis Thomas’s expressive analogies between biological phenomena and human concerns. He connects this to the “images” underlying many scientific theories, such as “Darwin’s vision of the tree of life, Freud’s notion of the unconscious as submerged like an iceberg, and John Dalton’s view of the atom as a tiny solar system.”

‘’You cannot depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.”

~ Mark Twain;


The mathematician, Dr. August Möbius (1790-1886) discovered this one-sided surface that became known as the Möbius Strip or Möbius Band. (Image to the right)

If you start with a strip of paper (image on the left) and join the ends, you get a simple band (image on the right). But if you give the strip of paper a single twist, as shown here on the left, and then join the ends, you get a Möbius Strip.

Can you visualise, and then draw at least ten different spatial configurations of a Möbius Strip?

Some suggestions for the Möbius Strip Exercise

A popular limerick is associated with the Mobius marvel:

“A mathematician confided
That a Mobius band is one-sided,
And you’ll get quite a laugh,
If you cut one in half,
For it stays in one piece when divided.”

Some examples of technical applications where Mobius Strips have been used:

• as conveyor belts that last longer because the entire surface area of the belt gets the same amount of wear;
• as continuous-loop recording tapes (to double the playing time);
• in the manufacturing of fabric computer printer and typewriter ribbons, allowing the ribbon to be twice as wide as the printhead while using both half-edges evenly;
• in medicine, to restore emotional balance, easier breathing and more coordinated movements;

Make a rift in the center of gravity of the human body (going from one leg to another) and at the same time moving the arms while turning the body. The center of gravity moves while taking one, two or three steps from heel to toe during one continuous outward breath.

During one, two, three or four steps back, toe to heel. The interval between the inhalation and exhalation is made while keeping the human body balanced on the right or left leg; bending the knee of the supporting (bearing) leg and moving ahead or bending the other leg’s knee while moving the arms in the trajectory of a Mobius strip.

(Source: Dr Abram Teplitskiy)

[Excerpted from the 'Ideas on Ideas' edition of The Braindancer Series of bookazines by Dilip Mukerjea. All the images in this post are the intellectual property of Dilip Mukerjea.]

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