Monday, June 11, 2012

Finding "IT": Creativity and the Flow State

From Serendip:

"All of a sudden somewhere in the middle of the chorus he gets IT- everybody looks up and knows; they listen; he picks it up and carries. Time stops. He's filling empty space with the substance of our lives, confessions of his bellybottom strain, remembrance of ideas, rehashes of old blowing. He has to blow across bridges and come back and do it with such infinite feeling soul-exploratory for the tune of the moment that everybody knows its not the tune that counts but IT
." - from "On the Road" by Jack Kerouac
Jack Kerouac

Jack Kerouac wrote his infamous novel "On the Road" over the course of three weeks in April 1951. A chronicle of his seven-year journey across the United States, On the Road captures the energy of his age in textured, rhythmic prose. His most compelling passages center around the jazz he witnessed in the sweat-soaked nightclubs of New Orleans and the smoke-filled cellars of Harlem. Kerouac was fascinated by the distinct ability of jazz musicians to spontaneously unite a room of people through improvisation. In a telepathic trance the trumpeters and tambourine men seemed to synchronize their brainwaves, resulting in Kerouac's resounding "IT."

The question now for neuroscience is what is "IT"? How is "IT" achieved? And what is "IT's" power to unite?

In the following paragraphs I seek to synthesize neurological research on creativity and the "flow state" theory in order to better understand the creative mind at work and its ability to attain "IT."

See the entire article here:

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