Genius can be unsettling, even intimidating. Perhaps that’s what we need to feel every so often…
“Geniuses are like thunderstorms. They go against the wind, terrify people, cleanse the air.”
Soren Aabye Kierkegaard
Talent hits a target no one else can hit; Genius hits a target no one else can see.
May our eyes see beyond the obvious and take another look at the improbable, impossible and impractical…perhaps we have overlooked genius?
A genius at work conjures up a professor with notebook standing over a Bunsen burner, a musician/composer furiously scribbling notes across a parchment, or an artist covered in paint agonizing over a brushstroke. I sometimes forget about the engineers; that is until I visited London’s Kew Bridge Steam Museum.
Kew Bridge was constructed in the 19th century to supply London with water. As I wandered through the museum looking at the world’s largest collection of steam pumping engines, the first thought that came to my mind was – genius. The second was – this took an enormous amount of effort and hard work.
According to Thomas A. Edison, we can all be geniuses.
“Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration.”
When a true genius appears, you can know him by this sign: that all the dunces are in a confederacy against him.”
Jonathan Swift (1667 – 1745), the author of Gulliver’s travels, was an Anglo-Irish satirist, essayist, political pamphleteer, poet, who became Dean of St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin.
This quote reminds me that I can contribute to the dunce factor, by not recognizing genius when it is right in front of me. I may not like a certain type of music, artwork or fashion statement, but I cannot deny that genius is at work.