Have you ever seen an apple fall from a tree? One day a man with great imagination saw that commonplace thing. His imagination seized upon it, and he propounded Newton?s theory of law of gravitation. Another man sees his mother’s teakettle boiling. He observes that the lid is raised by the expanding steam. His great imagination starts from this homely detail; and he gives to the world–the steam engine.
And so we might go on indefinitely. Enough, perhaps, to repeat that the world’s inventions have been possessed of fine and daring imagination, and that, without great powers of imagination, there can be accomplished no great or important work of any nature whatever.
Perhaps you feel that your own imagination does not always serve you as well as it should; perhaps you are wishing that it was better–that you could produce in it such improvement as to enable you to create some good and worthy thing in the world. In that case I am glad to be able to tell you that, of all the powers of the mind, none is capable of being so easily, conveniently, and rapidly cultivated as the imagination. And I may remark that, as in the case of other faculties, the means taken to cultivate the imagination will at the same time necessarily train and strengthen the mentality in every other direction.
First of all, it must be understood that the act of imagining, of bringing images before the mind, is not a separate function of the mentality, but that it is closely interwoven with, partly consists of, in fact, several other of the mental faculties. So in developing the power of imagination we must first speak of these other faculties which are really a part of it. If we study an act of imagination, we shall find that first of all we must have some material for our image.
To most people the act of imagination means the creation of something entirely new. They think that the picture created by the painter, the poet, the novelist, is new in every detail. Now, this is a radical error. The artist does not create anything that is entirely new. And this for a very good reason–there is not and never will be anything entirely new. Now, as in the days of Solomon: “There is nothing new under the sun.”
You may imagine, for instance, a green horse with purple wings. You say: Surely, that is an entirely new idea. I say: No, it is merely a new combination of four very old and commonplace ideas–a horse, a pair of wings, and the two colors, green and purple. And so in all creations, no matter what they may be –however new they may seem–it is only the combination that is new. The materials combined are old, as old, very often, as human thought itself.
We see, then, that the first raw material for imagination is our percepts–the things we have seen and heard and felt and smelled and tasted. And it seems hardly necessary to state that the better service we have gotten from our senses and perceptions, the more clear and vivid will be our power to bring before the mind images made up of those things. The first task, then, of her who would develop her power of imagination is to educate the senses.
In cultivating the power of imagination, then, we must begin by educating perception, memory, and association. Educate your senses using visual examples through DVD learning. You can be entertained and educated at the same time. Allowing you to grow the raw material needed to have an adventurous and vital imagination.