Genius is uniform in cause, though varied in expression and environment

The two most significant transitions in the history of mankind were the invention of agriculture – which happened before history, independently in several times and places and spread rather gradually; and the industrial revolution – which was lavishly documented, happened in England and spread very rapidly.

My understanding is that such revolutions are made from breakthroughs that are the product of creative geniuses, of individual and specially gifted men. Without the geniuses, there is only incremental improvement of existing methods.

But geniuses come in many types. Clearly, genius in painting and literature does not make an industrial revolution. So, the question is what kind of geniuses made the industrial revolution?

Bruce Charlton
It was “Agintrans” geniuses of enhanced productivity that made the industrial revolution

For once, I actually disagree with Charlton (on the latter point). Creativity arises from a remarkably small number of factors. I prefer Cooijmans’ take on genius as, primarily, a phenomenological consequence of consciousness. It only appears different in practice because it’s expressed through different cognitive/personality styles and in different fields of study. E.g. an INTJ mathematical genius will seem different from an ENTP agricultural genius, but the underlying process is the same.

This is why I’m stating categorically that Beethoven’s genius was made of the same stuff as Newton’s genius. Creativity is simply something geniuses do as a reaction to perceiving the world, like when the doctor taps your knee to test your patellar reflex. Put Newton behind a piano for twenty years, and he’s going to compose original music. Because his brain is wired differently than Beethoven’s, it might not be good music, or important music, or revolutionary music, but it would be silly to assume he’s going to be satisfied by playing someone else’s music forever. Ditto Beethoven, vice versa.

Tap two different knees the same way and they respond differently, maybe because one man’s leg is twice as massive as the other man’s. That’s what I mean by various “expression”, via different hardware. Tap the same knee in two different ways, and it responds in two different ways. Put Newton to work on a farm for twenty years and he’s going to innovate something, it just might not be physics.

About Aeoli Pera

Maybe do this later?
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8 Responses to Genius is uniform in cause, though varied in expression and environment

  1. Craig says:

    ENTP agricultural genius utilises INTJ mathematical, physical chemistry, biology, microbiology, invertebrate zoology, geology, and many more fields of genius, and the curiosity of exploring ideas helps. Agronomists, a career line I’m also interested in, has a large scope of science backing it up. It’s why we can argue to go organic, or at least half organic now.

    Farming is more a happy hobby, if you haven’t much debt. Hard for small guys to make a buck man. I know an organic Orchardist that dreams of finding a gold nugget in the creek, to pay off the farm.

    The number of trades an agriculturalist or engineer working solo needs to know in the field is pretty damn large too, makes projects cheaper, your labour. That’s why it’s a grey collar job.

    • Aeoli Pera says:

      Math is more of an INTP thing in general, I was just picking personality types at random to illustrate the obvious point that you can put different people in the same profession and get different results.

      I would love to try living a self-sustaining life, but I can’t even keep my car insurance paid up. Fact is that when you go off the grid, you become a valid target. The worst threat to a homeless schizophenic is other humans, particularly the authorities.

      A guy in my area recently got shot by the cops because he was walking around with a rifle and yelling crazy stuff, so his neighbors got scared and called the cops. The cops tried reasoning with him, and then shot him preemptively when that didn’t work. He wasn’t breaking any laws except the law of iron.

  2. mobiuswolf says:

    “I would love to try living a self-sustaining life”
    Do it yourself or do without. Don’t wait until you are too old, it’s hard enough to keep up when you’re spry.

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