In everyday language, the word thinking covers several distinct psychological activities. It is sometimes a synonym for “tending to believe,” especially with less than full confidence (“I think that it will rain, but I am not sure”). At other times it denotes the degree of attentiveness (“I did it without thinking”) or whatever is in consciousness, especially if it refers to something outside the immediate environment (“It made me think of my grandmother”). Psychologists have concentrated on thinking as an intellectual exertion aimed at finding an answer to a question or the solution of a practical problem.
Posted: 28 Nov 2017 01:27 PM PST
I want to begin with a quotation from my old teacher Fritz Perls, who developed Gestalt Therapy:
It is obvious that an eagle’s potential will be actualized in roaming the sky, diving down on smaller animals for food, and in building nests. It is obvious that the elephant’s potential will be actualized in size, power and clumsiness.
No eagle will want to be an elephant, no elephant to be an eagle. They “accept” themselves; they accept them-“selves.” No, they don’t even accept themselves, for this would mean possible rejection.
They take themselves for granted. No, they don’t even take themselves for granted; that would imply the possibility of otherness. They are what they are what they are.
How absurd it would be if they, like humans, had fantasies, dissatisfactions and self-deceptions! How absurd it would be if the elephant, tired of walking the earth, wanted to fly, eat rabbits and lay eggs. And the eagle wanted to have the strength and thick skin of the beast.
Leave this to the human—to try to be something he is not—to have ideals that cannot be reached, to be cursed with perfectionism so as to be safe from criticism, and to open the road to unending mental torture.
—from Fritz Perls’ autobiography, In and Out the Garbage Pail.
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