According to Dr. George Land, he was once contacted by the National Aeronautics Space Agency (NASA) and another expert named Beth Jarman in order to develop a special cognitive test that would be able to determine the so-called creative potential of NASA engineers and rocket scientists. After formulating the test, they gave it to NASA for it to be used, and it was found to be highly effective in fulfilling NASA's wishes. It wasn't long after that when scientists began to wonder certain things about creativity in the human brain.
So to find out the answers to their questions -- like where creativity comes from, or whether it's a learned trait or inborn -- they gave the highly specialized test to 1,600 children over the age of four and five. They found that a whopping 98 percent of all the test participants fell under the genius category. Now, that might look like a major find, but the scientists didn't stop there.
They went further and gave the tests to a progressively older set of individuals. First were kids who were 10 years old. They were surprised to find that these 10-year-olds, most of whom were from the original set of test takers, failed to meet a similar percentage of so-called creative geniuses; only 30 percent of them fell under that category.
Meanwhile, adults performed even worse at the test. According to the data, only two percent of participating adults recorded test scores that fell under the creative genius bracket. So what exactly does this all mean? Is there any way we can make sense of it?
Remarkably, Dr. Land himself has come forward and done it for the benefit of everyone. That is, in a recently conducted TEDx talk, he shared all details of a study that concluded that people somehow lose their creative side mainly because of the dull education system that they underwent. According to another expert named Gavin Nascimento, it should be no surprise.
"The reasoning for this is not too difficult to apprehend; school, as we plainly call it, is an institution that has historically been put in place to ultimately serve the wants of the ruling class, not the common people," said Nascimento. "In order for the so-called elite to maintain their lavish lifestyles of overt luxury -- where they contribute the least but enjoy the most -- they understand that children must be dumbed down and brainwashed to accept (and even serve) their rapacious system of artificial scarcity, unending exploitation, and incessant war."
No matter where you stand on the creative spectrum, one thing is quite clear: if you can recognize the truth about your condition, then it isn't too late to do something about it. According to Dr. Land, the key could be something as simple as dreaming like a child again. That way, you may unlock the secrets that made you such a prodigy when you were younger.
Learn more about how the brain works in Brain.news.