Imagination  

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This page Imagination is part of the fantasy series.Illustration: Screenshot from A Trip to the Moon (1902) Georges Méliès
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This page Imagination is part of the fantasy series.
Illustration: Screenshot from A Trip to the Moon (1902) Georges Méliès
"The mind of man can imagine nothing which has not really existed [...]." --Edgar Allan Poe
The Map of Tendre (Carte du Tendre) is a French map of an imaginary country called Tendre. It shows a geography entirely based around the theme of love.
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The Map of Tendre (Carte du Tendre) is a French map of an imaginary country called Tendre. It shows a geography entirely based around the theme of love.

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Imagination is accepted as the innate ability and process to invent partial or complete personal realms within the mind from elements derived from sense perceptions of the shared world. The term is technically used in psychology for the process of reviving in the mind percepts of objects formerly given in sense perception. Since this use of the term conflicts with that of ordinary language, some psychologists have preferred to describe this process as "imaging" or "imagery" or to speak of it as "reproductive" as opposed to "productive" or "constructive" imagination. Imagined images are seen with the "mind's eye".

One hypothesis for the evolution of human imagination is that it allowed conscious beings to solve problems (and hence increase an individual's fitness) by use of mental simulation.

Description

The common use of the term is for the process of forming new images in the mind that have not been previously experienced with the help of what has been seen, heard, or felt before, or at least only partially or in different combinations. Some typical examples follow:

Imagination, not being limited to the acquisition of exact knowledge by the requirements of practical necessity is largely free from objective restraints. The ability to imagine one's self in another person's place is very important to social relations and understanding. Albert Einstein said, "Imagination ... is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world."

But in reality, without knowledge, imagination can not be developed.

In various spheres, however, even imagination is in practice limited: thus a person whose imaginations do violence to the elementary laws of thought, or to the necessary principles of practical possibility, or to the reasonable probabilities of a given case is usually regarded by mental health professionals as insane.

The same limitations beset imagination in the field of scientific hypothesis. Progress in scientific research is due largely to provisional explanations which are developed by imagination, but such hypotheses must be framed in relation to previously ascertained facts and in accordance with the principles of the particular science.

Imagination is an experimental partition of the mind used to develop theories and ideas based on functions. Taking objects from real perceptions, the imagination uses complex IF-functions to develop new or revised ideas. This part of the mind is vital to developing better and easier ways to accomplish old and new tasks. These experimental ideas can be safely conducted inside a virtual world and then, if the idea is probable and the function is true, the idea can be actualized in reality. Imagination is the key to new development of the mind and can be shared with others, progressing collectively.

Regarding the volunteer effort, imagination can be classified as:

  • voluntary (the dream from the sleep, the daydream)
  • involuntary (the reproductive imagination, the creative imagination, the dream of perspective)


See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Imagination" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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