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This I Believe essay: Humanities Power Plant


I believe that the creative mind is the source of all power in the world. Try to picture in your mind something. It could be the image of a loved one, or maybe the tune to your favorite song, it could be the taste of mama's homemade pumpkin pie, or even the feel of smooth glass under your hand. In all of these, our mind is taking what our senses tell it and is building the world around us. But it does more than just build the world. If we want it to, it can build hundreds of worlds, thousands of worlds, which never will, never have, and never can exist but in that mind. Our mind doesn't only perceive things. It can also be used in another way, to think. Personally I love to think. That's it, to think. The fact that I may think "better" than someone else or "quicker" than someone else doesn't matter. The simple fact that within each of ourselves as human beings we have all of this power is amazing. But it's even more amazing to think creatively. Take, for example, two men that want to scale a hundred foot sheer cliff. One man "quickly" thinks that without a lot of gear and the proper training he could never do it, and leaves to go buy this gear and get his training. The other man stays sitting, just thinking. What he is doing is thinking of all the possible ways to scale the cliff. He may sit there for a day, maybe two, but in this time he can come up with a brilliantly creative idea. This idea gets him up the cliff right then and there. All the while, the other man is out spending money and time. Behold the power of creativity! All this talk about mountains reminds me of a case in my life where creative thinking helped me. I was in an ethics class and we were discussing a hypothetical case where a group of people were trying to escape their homeland by crossing a mountain. As they were climbing over they found a starving and freezing person. At this point the teacher gave us three possible outcomes. Carry the man back down the mountain to his survival, take him partially down to a hut, or abandon him where he was. In the first case they would be caught and killed by their own government. In the second case they might save the man's life but the chances were incredibly small, not only that, but they still might be caught. The final case was the only way they were sure to escape but they were essentially killing the man. As the class erupted into debate over what they would do and why; I held my opinion. It was unusual for me to be quite so the teacher eventually called me out, "James, your being awfully quite. What's your opinion on all of this?" I replied to him, "Why couldn't they bring the man with them? They had the supplies and they could carry him. They had everything necessary to take care of him. I think they should have taken the man with them." The teacher paused, and then burst out, "That's the first time I can say that I've ever heard that as an answer. Wow! I never even thought of that." It isn't only in cases like this, but a creative mind can save lives. It can also make millions, or create and destroy nations, even worlds. It has all the power in the heavens. And amazingly, we each have a copy.