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Dan Ariely Talks Creativity And Dishonesty (scientificamerican.com)
32 points by hobbyistbee 1666 days ago | hide | past | web | 6 comments | favorite



What kind of people would be able to rationalize better than other people? Better storytellers, right?

Just read any essay by Orwell about writing, and you'll know the answer is "no, I think you meant to say sloppy storytellers". For me creativity requires focus, it requires reflection, it requires constantly evaluating not just what you're doing, but why you're doing it. That is, if you want to be more than just a hack and a poisonous distraction (which, granted, for some actually is the definition of being creative.. but they're wrong IMO). And I say this as someone who is usually a hack, 99% of the time. I wrote and forgot so many crappy lyrics for example, but there's one or two I still feel proud of after nearly 10 years. But those I didn't create by just being easy on myself, but by focusing and working rather hard.

(or am I just rationalizing it? :P)


I don't think you're rationalizing. Creativity requires fuller understanding of every little detail and interdependency of the thing you're creating. It might be easier to deceive someone else, but not yourself, you just know too much.


It might be easier to deceive someone else, but not yourself, you just know too much.

Ohh, you're right.. maybe I don't actually disagree with the "article" (it's not really much, and I didn't read or listen to the whole thing yet) then.. because yes, exploring truth certainly makes it easier to lie as well. Being able to be honest to yourself doesn't really translate into being so all the time, and much less into being honest to others necessarily (though I like to think it can help, too ^^).

If you dove around in certain swamp a lot, you can also much more easily walk among some patches of grass on the surface, pretending there is no swamp to an onlooker; precisely because you spent some time in it.

But I still would like to think real mastery of anything worth mastering comes out at a point where you prefer even mediocre truths to grand lies, so I don't want to completely retract my first knee-jerk comment either :)


beign right about the fact that creativity requires fuller (crystal clear) understanding (generally, imaginative visuallisation and some level of abstraction) of whatever you are creating i see no relationship btwn interpendency and creativity.


Don't miss the link to full podcast (30 minutes) vs the short extract directly on article. http://www.scientificamerican.com/podcast/episode.cfm?id=cre...


Q: How do you know Ariely is talking dishonestly?

A: His lips are moving.

Oh, I must have misread the title ;)




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