SCI-ART LAB

Science, Art, Litt, Science based Art & Science Communication

Q: Will loneliness destroy a person?

Krishna: That really depends on the personality of the lonely being. There are people who enjoy loneliness and make use of it in positive and creative ways and there are people who wail in self pity.

Who says loneliness is boring? It is fun and highly productive. And highly creative people prefer loneliness. Creativity -both scientific and artistic - flourishes in solitude. With quiet, you can hear your thoughts, you can reach deep within yourself, you can focus.

Behavioral studies have found that more creative people may have leaky sensory filters. That means the involuntary neurological process that ordinarily filters out irrelevant stimuli are not as fully engaged.

To test that idea, researchers asked volunteers to fill out a creative achievement questionnaire and take a test to assess creative cognition. Then, their brain activity was monitored while they listened to closely separated click sounds.

A typical brain responds to the first click a lot stronger than the second, identical click. It’s as if the brain acknowledges it processed something novel and doesn’t need to process the second click to the same extent. But for creative brains—the situation can be different!

Very creative people process the second click to the same degree so they don’t censor out information that is repetitive or irrelevant in some sense. What’s interesting is that it happens 50 milliseconds after stimulus onset. With behavioral studies it’s impossible to sort of know exactly when this…happens. And with neurophysiology they are able to see that only 50 milliseconds after…the clicks in their study were presented. More creative people were less likely to filter out the noise. So 50 milliseconds, you’re not able to decide whether…to process something or not, it’s sort of an automatic response.

For creative minds each and every thing that comes their way is important and should be processed in equal ways and all points should be noted with highest priority.

If this kind of hyper-alert condition sounds familiar, you are highly creative! Mozart, Kafka, Darwin, Chekhov, Tesla, and Proust were reported to avoid distractions while working because they were easily distracted. If noise derails your thought, the problem might be that you may have a highly creative brain that's less able to filter out seemingly unimportant events.

According to Tesla: “The mind is sharper and keener in seclusion and uninterrupted solitude. Originality thrives in seclusion free of outside influences beating upon us to cripple the creative mind. Be alone—that is the secret of invention: be alone, that is when ideas are born.”

Goethe: “One can be instructed in society, one is inspired only in solitude.”

Picasso: “Without great solitude no serious work is possible."

Carl Sandburg: “One of the greatest necessities is to discover creative solitude.”

Thomas Mann: “Solitude gives birth to the original in us, to beauty unfamiliar and perilous — to poetry.”

“Creativity is essentially a lonely art. An even lonelier struggle. To some a blessing. To others a curse. It is in reality the ability to reach inside yourself and drag forth from your very soul an idea.”~Lou Dorfsman

So almost all creative people either in science or art prefer solitude and agree with other creative people.

Reasonable-- and meaningful-- set of four factors that govern solitude according to experts:

1. Preference for solitude

Prefer to be left alone, want to be left alone, seek quiet, don't like crowded events

2. Enjoyment of solitude

Enjoy spending time by oneself, amuse oneself easily

3. Introspection

Spend time reflecting on things, enjoy contemplation, like to ponder over things

4. Nonconformity

Have a point of view all one's own, go one's own way, live in a world of one's own, do things at one's own pace.

Research suggests that there are some serious benefits to singlehood. For example, people who score high on the desire to spend time alone are less likely to be neurotic and more likely to be open-minded than are people who prefer to be surrounded with others. Single people also develop a diverse portfolio of skills — they can't depend on a partner to do the taxes or cook dinner — which may give them a sense of mastery over life.

We really need to do is find out much more about what's important to single people, what their lives are like, what they value — and that gives us a much fuller and fairer picture of the different ways of living a life.

Q: Why are some people mentally strong while others aren't as much? Is it mostly genetics? (Not very mentally strong) woman in her early twenties here. Why is it so hard for some people to be mentally strong? Are people just born with a tendency to be mentally strong/weak?  

Krishna: Let me answer you from my point of view.

It is not hereditary for me because none of my family members are as strong as I am. I was also a ‘weak’ person when I was very young.

But I am extremely strong now…

My strength came from my confidence because of my knowledge in several fields and my critical thinking capabilities. I can analyse the problems I have thoroughly and rationally, and solve them using my knowledge creatively. Even I never thought I could do all this until I did and my friends, colleagues, relatives and people who knew me from the beginning too get surprised now.

Like somebody said … you really don’t know how strong you are until … being strong becomes your only choice…

WHEN BEING STRONG BECOMES YOUR ONLY CHOICE

Who knows even you could become a strong person when circumstances demand that from you! So don’t lose heart. 

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