Ripples: Intelligence’s Optimum Point

Quote 1: Ignorance is bliss.

Quote 2: There’s nothing to fear except fear itself.

If intelligence could ever be fit into a single line scale, fear would be coloured in the middle.

The common notion is that fear is a wall that prevents us from various things such as being ourselves or expressing our emotions. I disagree because for one, I would not call that fear. Perhaps using the word cowardice is a stretch; pressure is a better word. The point is, that cursed wall is something much less profound than fear.

Going back to the idea of intelligence expressed through a scale, the two ends would be devoid of fear. On the low end, they say “ignorance is bliss”: I don’t think I’ve ever heard of a more accurate quote. Not knowing does not quite have the negative connotation that ignorance does but generally speaking, ignorant people dare to take risks partially because of their blissful unawareness of the consequences. Rising in the scale, knowledge increases. When knowledge increases, your view of the world is widened; therefore, you are aware of your role in society. This is when fear comes to play: knowledge leads to fear of the unknown because the more you know, the more you don’t know. Is fear so bad? Looking at the scale, the middle-high  area is where most people desire to be at and that area is precisely where fear is the most concentrated. Therefore, fear isn’t a block. Fear is something that protects us from ourselves, and from outside sources.

What about the upper area of the scale? I guess it could be either a bloated sense of intelligence or actual genius. When a sense of intelligence floats to higher than the optimum point, then fear disappears; this time, not because of ignorance, but as a result of you feeling higher than fear itself. On both ends, lack of fear is dangerous because it eliminates the barrier that alerts your common sense.

I don’t know where the optimum point is but there’s this one point that intelligence reaches its maximum while fear is still present. With all intelligence, there’s arrogance present that is concealed for most cases. Arrogance is fine if only in little concentrations but there’s a point where it overrides your other senses and that is the optimum point of intelligence.

Come to think of it, for a society where intelligence does not solely measure your outcome in life, our school systems encourage high intelligence too often. Those rare preaches of community service hardly makes up for the students who are stressed about their grades and constantly comparing them to others hoping to surpass theirs.

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One thought on “Ripples: Intelligence’s Optimum Point

  1. Really enjoyed reading your posts and this one in particular.

    From the perspective of someone who left school too many years ago I think the place to aim for on the intelligence/fear continuum is where one accepts that failure is not necessarily a bad thing; for example, I failed to get up in time to catch a bus this morning … a bad thing? not really I wouldn’t be reading your (and other) blogs if I hadn’t failed.

    Once the concept that failing can be profitable is realised the fear is still there but since intelligence is accompanied by self-esteem (bravery) we become empowered to take risks.

    I was late finding out how to be brave and have given over too much of my life to the fear end of the scale … I am working on steering clear of there from now on!

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