How to be a Creative Genius #5

24 12 2009

Life Lessons form the Childhood of Einstein

5.   Perceive the universe as a puzzle to be solved

As a child I loved to solve jigsaw puzzles.

Solving jigsaw puzzles is a wonderful metaphor of thinking.  When some are asked how to solve jigsaw puzzles they say “one piece at a time”.  This method may work but is not very efficient or fun.  I wanted to solve puzzles by using my mind. 

1.  Dump pieces out and turn them all face up on the table.

2.  Sort the pieces by edges and inside pieces.

3.  Locate the corners and construct the frame of the puzzle.

4.  Sort inside pieces by color and design. 

5.  Switch modes of thinking constantly by: Finding pieces to go in a particular space and look for a space for a particular piece

What is the missing piece in the puzzle?  The missing piece is curiosity

Life is full of mysteries.  Science is the solving of puzzles.   There is a huge world out there that stands like a great puzzle filled with mysteries piled one on top of the other.  Science is that attempt to understand these mysteries with logical thought.  When we find a puzzle we look for a clue the only way we can- by what we see and experience.  Then we use our imagination to solve these puzzles.  To solve a puzzle you must be curious and determined.  Ask question after question until you can come up with something- a theory that explains the puzzle. A good theory will explain this puzzle and many other puzzles.  There is no shortage of puzzles.  In our quest in solving puzzles we must stand on the shoulders of thinkers who came before us. Learn from great thinkers of the past who wanted to solve the puzzles of the universe.  It is not just math and science that you need a sense of curious determination. There are puzzles in every field of study– Art, history, reading and every topic.

Puzzles to me became a symbol for how I desire to figure things out.  The world is put together in an orderly way and we have the mind to solve the puzzles and mysteries of the universe. I kept on looking until it started to make sense.  Missing piece for many is curiosity.   When you develop curiosity you will see the universe as a puzzle to be solved.

      Perceive the universe as a puzzle to be solved




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