Intellect: What Makes One Intelligent?

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What comprises of an intellectual being?  Is it common knowledge, street smarts, academics, or a balance of these?

Let’s start off with common knowledge.  This is your basic every day comprehension of the world around you.  It is accessed through communication with others. Anyone can get this information from the television, radio, internet, friends, family, and any other form of obtaining data.  It can be local, global, or personal news.  Ordinary computing or verbal skills are necessary to hold this information on paper, an electronic device, or in your own mind.  It doesn’t really “take a genius” to store this information.

Street smarts, what is it?  It is your understanding of what goes on beyond the walls of your own home.  It can be illegal, immoral, or just plain disturbing.  But it is through this knowledge of how to cope with these activities and to survive that makes one street smart.  Some of these occurrences consist of gangs, drugs, con artists, as well as common thieves, liars, and cheats.

People who are good at academics are the ones acknowledged as being intellectual.  This is a person who holds a passing or an above average grade point average.  I feel that even if a person is not enrolled in school, they can achieve this smarts from studying different types of text on their own.

I have left out a detrimental aspect of the intellect, which is spiritual awareness.  This is the inner knowing of something that is unable to be grasped that is out there and is bigger than us.  Without this awareness, a person cannot even fathom the way to actually use the prior knowledge.  It is through our spiritual selves by which we thrive.

So as a conclusion to this article on intellect, I now believe that for someone to the known as a truly intellectual person, they need to achieve equilibrium between these four worlds of consciousness.  The 4 elements are at play in every facet of one’s being in all things.  I feel that common sense is an earthy outlook, street smarts: water, academic: air and spiritual awareness: fire; the practical, emotional, mental and cosmic parts of life.

 

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