Thoughts on the Imagination

The following five points are relatively undeveloped thoughts on the imagination, and may seem slightly cryptic and abstract.  I attempt to relate these thoughts to the teacher’s task in the classroom at the end.

1.  The imagination is awakened by admiration.

2.  Two powers associated with the imagination are the perceptive and the formative.  Once the imagination sees into the nature of any thing or person it works to resolve and bring harmony between the perceiver and the perceived.

3.  As the imagination is awakened we must first understand very clearly the works, or effectual powers, of the imagination.  The perceptive power enables one to directly see the nature of any thing or person.  the formative power gradually moves one toward the imitation of the idea perceived.

4.  While the imagination works between two disharmonic poles, it works from the lower to the higher, from disharmony to harmony; it restores order to chaos.

5.  It is initially awakened and driven by adoration — love.   We naturally love what is in accord with (our) nature.  The soul yearns for that which it was designed.  Only the sick soul looses sight of this.

I think that we do not need to grow too anxious as teachers over what to do, except to allow the imagination to work.  The weight of a teacher’s work is to show students the ideas, clearly present models, and let the student come into contact and perceive the disharmony.  The imagination begins its work at this point, and the best a teacher can do is to not manipulate the child’s imagination, but to relinquish control and guide the imagination toward its goal.

Once admiration directs the imagination toward its object, the desire to partake in the object propels the imagination through its formative course.

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One Response

  1. Buck

    I’m eager to see you develop this more. Two things puzzle me:

    1. Isn’t this just romanticism reacting instead of fulfilling the rationalism of the Enlightenment?
    2. How do you compensate for the corrupted will of the learner?

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