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"What does an uneducated genius look like?"

November 18, 2019

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"What does an uneducated genius look like?"

November 18, 2019

The above question from is provocative, intriguing and raises more questions.

Does a genius need education? What kind of education does a genius need? Does a genius need a special kind of education?

The Quora response thread starts with the following answer "Depressed, usually", leading to the idea that a genius can be inadequately educated, inadequately evaluated and be misunderstood. While discussing the topic with peers, someone surprisingly argued a seemingly opposite viewpoint that in fact an "educated genius" is more likely to be depressed. When asked "why", the answer made sense: "Because it can be depressing to be taught, guided and limited by someone who knows less than you.


The following comment on the response thread may give you pause:

"29 years old, high school drop out, smoked weed for years, couldn’t spell my way out of a paper bag at 21, hadn’t read a book to the end before age 18, have little behind my name in regards to certificates. I’ve tried my best to pull my life together once I figured out that I am not dumb a few years ago, rather highly gifted. But it is no easy task! Rewiring years of broken foundations is daunting to say the least. I’ll be turning 30 in sept with no house, no car, no girlfriend, basically no friends and no money. Thank God I found programming tho, I’ll be launching a POS program that I’ve designed and coded for the past year. If all goes well, I just might be able to catch up on lost ground and break even by 40. But nothing can bring back the years of frustration and depression. We certainly do not live in a perfect world."


Intelligence and knowledge can actually be 2 different things...making the above question almost irrelevant. Someone said: "Knowledge is having the right answer. Intelligence is asking the right question." But the answer may also depend on what we mean by education. Is education about teaching what one must know, what one must do or how one must think?...or maybe all of the above?


Albert Einstein reportedly said: "The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination." The statement could imply that one can have one without the other. One could also argue that knowledge, although distinct from intelligence, does nurture intelligence.


At Los Alamos Makers, we pride ourselves in being a haven for nerds of all kinds, and we also strive to be an inclusive space for all abilities.

The goal is for everyone to be able to expand their abilities at their own pace, in a safe yet challenging, inclusive and non-judgmental environment.


So get involved and join us! Discover something new you may be great at...or help someone else figure out what they are great at. We are absolutely grateful for all our selfless genius volunteers!!!




Fair warning!

The answers on Quora mention this interesting and arguable article:

(You can hear an audio version of the article in the YouTube video below). We only post this link for information but do not specifically support that organization. The article is interesting in itself, but please refrain from getting on their mailing list. Someone warned that it may be some kind of cult..  Not sure how valid the statement is, but consider yourself warned!