Just a list of thoughts that I try to take inspiration from as guidelines for life...
Question everything, Learn something, Answer nothing
This is a quote by Euripides. I do not know what the original context was but this is how I, and many others from what I've read here and there on the internet, interpret it.
Question everything: do not take anything anyone tells you for the absolute truth. Think for yourself and form your own opinion. A good way to do this is to compare the views of different people that you consider to be proficient in whatever you're dealing with. Of course, if you trust someone a lot, give this person's thoughts more credit.
Learn something: have an opinion on everything, and clear reasons to explain your position. Also, get something out of any situation: a life lesson, pure knowledge...
Answer nothing: this is the counterpart of the previous point: be open minded. Having an opinion on a given topic does not mean you should then keep it all your life. If someone or something makes you realize that the reasons you have this opinion might be wrong, you should not ignore it (but do not accept it blindly as a new "truth" either, as the first point of this quote warns!)
- I believe knowledge is the key to intelligence: people become intelligent as they acquire more and more knowledge.
- The Threshold hypothesis, introduced by Ellis Paul Torrance, says that a person has to be "intelligent" in order to be "creative", whereas the opposite is not true. I agree with this: I can't think of a person that did something groundbreaking and wasn't intelligent. On the other hand, many head of the class never did anything revolutionary though they were undoubtedly very bright.
As a result of the two previous convictions I had, I concluded that a person has to be "knowledgeable" in order to be "creative" and, then, I thought that this was in utter contradiction with the famous "Imagination is more important than knowledge" quote by Albert Einstein... because, in my mind, "creativity" was the exact same thing as "imagination". However I found out that:
- Imagination is thinking of something that is not present, or the act of bringing things into conscious that aren’t here.
- Creativity is doing something meaningful with your imagination.
Finally, I ended up with the following conception of what it takes to be creative, and thus successful:
Imagination is as important as knowledge: none of them can be left aside on the road to success :)
A few others
Do or do not, there is no try (Master Yoda, Star Wars :p)
Genius is one percent inspiration, ninety-nine percent perspiration (Thomas Edison)
Feel free to comment below.