People Consider There To Be Two Kinds Essay

¶ … people consider there to be two kinds of thinking. "Convergent" or analytic thought we normally relate to mathematics and science. In this method of thinking things already thought to be related are demonstrated as connected logically. The second kind, "divergent" or associative thought, is closer to Freud's notion of free association (Gabora, 2010). In the first kind of thinking, relationships are proven instead of sought and in the second kind, they are sought and experienced rather than proven. Sometimes we categorize the first as scientific thinking and the second as creative. Convergent Thinking

Convergent thought is usually supposed to be linear. Two models can be used to describe it, the first being an equation based on logic and read left to right in a chronological sequence. First comes A, then B, then C, following one another in a sort of logical, step-by-step sentence form. The other model would be in the form of a theorem. In other words, begin with a "given" statement, state a hypothesis to prove, and then go step by logical step in proving it from the given. Among the most disciplined forms of thinking, these models of thought have given rise to understanding "reality" in the modern world. Story, myth, and legend seem to have no place in this world view. Only proven facts can be relied upon to give rise to new facts are considered to be strictly valid, and this has been the twentieth century's most sanctioned way of understanding the world. We begin to learn this kind of reasoning when we begin to learn numbers, and we follow it on through our years of school, from everything to understanding biology, physics, chemistry, mathematics, and geometry, and we continue using it throughout our lives even in small things like tracking our bank accounts. When we hear the word "reasoning," this kind of logical, scientific thinking is what is usually meant. Without this aspect of systematic thinking, there would be no critical thinking -- thinking about something in its relationship to an entirety. Without convergent thinking, we would have no means of...


But because convergent thinking is necessarily so confined, so channeled, it is also limited, surrounded by blinders. This kind of linear thinking alone is not enough to fully know the world, but it is the very basis of science and mathematics, what we might call "scientific" thinking. In a business, this is the area in which the accountant operates. Money comes in, money goes out. It is also the realm of data and research within the organization. The quest to know precisely what things motivate buyers, for example, is based on this model of inquiry. But this objective kind of thinking is not all that is necessary to make it in what some call the real world. To create a hypothesis in the first place, after all, imagination is necessary. Imagination, the second kind, which we will call associative thinking, is just as necessary as convergent.
Associative Thinking

The associative thinking process involves a kind of relaxing of the mind. Being able to find connections between things not obvious is what marks this kind of thinking. Finding patterns among dissimilar things, bringing things together, or showing relationships among groups of things that seem obvious when pointed out, but not particularly noticeable beforehand, constitute associative thinking. Whereas focused attention marks convergent thinking, defocused attention (Gabora 2010) is an attribute that allows associative thinking. People skilled at this process participate well in the creative realm. Association of colors and sounds, for example, things that can be mixed and matched arbitrarily until a kind of aesthetic harmony is reached can only come about through associative thinking. Within a corporation, these thinkers are necessary to create meaningful products from special formulas, formulas that begin with the convergent, analytic thinkers. The associative thinkers dream them, and the convergent thinkers make them. Together the two can bring together a product. Marketing and advertising spring from…

Sources Used in Documents:


Gabora, Liane. (2010). Revenge of the "neurds": Characterizing creative thought in terms of the structure and dynamics of memory [electronic version]. Creativity Research Journal, 22(1), 1-13.

Kirby, Gary & Goodpaster, Jeffery. (2007). Thinking: An interdisciplinary approach to critical and creative thought.(4th ed.).

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