Albert Einstein once said “True signs of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination”.
Well imagination is an extremely important and worthy skill. It’s an ability to simulate the ideas in mind. We can simulate a situation or scenario, and based on the outcome, we can decide whether to put efforts to bring that scenario to life or not. Sometimes we use imagination to guess the future possibilities.
But, is imagination really a reliable simulation?
The truth is, we can only imagine what we have already experienced, if not exactly then at least similar in some way. Otherwise, our imagination would be like a crud simulation that produces no or very unreliable and faded results.
Let’s take an example of a person, living his life entirely in a limited geographical region. He may dream about other areas after hearing stories from different people but he can never imagine the exact reality of life in those regions. The picture that he can imagine is totally colored by the data he gets from others’ experience. As we know that people are vulnerable to share the experience inaccurately which leads to unreliable information. That’s why mostly when we visit some area for the first time it turns out to be very different from the picture that we use to have in our mind about that. Same is true for other experiences.
Some people believe that reality is something that we can experience through our five senses while the imagination is something that we can’t interact with our senses which makes reality and imagination two complementary things. But is it really true? Well, sometimes we have a mouthwatering experience just based on our imagination. Like thinking about eating something sour makes us feel like we have just had it. Actually what is happening is while imagining it out mind recalls our past experiences and try to paint the picture based on our old experiences. More data we have in our mind about something more accurately we can imagine about it. It always work this way. The data can be in the form of our own experiences or the experiences that other had and then told us about or the experiences that get from watching other doing things. Whatever data we store in our mind through different experiences becomes the part of database that is searched by our mind while imagining something.
So the conclusion is that even though imagination and reality are two different experiences but they are strongly connected. We can’t imagine something that we no idea about, whatsoever. So if we want to make our imagination more and more accurate then what we need is to build a richer and richer database consisting of our real-life experience. After all, imagination is an excellent skill and can get us to the journey of the whole world or even the universe.