The Truth About Imagination
By Author Donna Jean McDunn
Through out history, people have pondered whether angels exist on earth. Many of us who believe they exist imagine angels to be good and kind. Others imagine “dark” angels? Ones who are full of hate and jealousy, ready to destroy all those who get in their way?
Who is correct? Can both be? We’ll let our imaginations help us decide.
In the mind, anything is possible. When an idea forms in the brain, the mind creates fiction or some other form of art. How does the mind do it and where does the source originate? The sources are virtually as endless as the imagination is deep. Imagination is a wonderful thing. We all have it and we all use it. So what is the truth about imagination?
In my copy of The World Book Dictionary 1987 edition, it describes imagination as:
1. “The action of imagining: power of forming pictures in the mind of things not present to the senses. Imagination leads people to think they see, hear, or feel things that are not there.”
2. The ability to create new things or ideas or to combine old ones into new forms.” It goes on to describe imagination as: “the ability to create believable or realistic pictures of things that never existed or happened.”
For inventers of new technologies, imagination boils down to inventing new things or creating something new from existing inventions. Modern day electronics grew from past technology, because someone had the imagination to create it in the first place.
For works of art, made with clay, paints, metal, or any other kinds of material, it’s someone’s imagination that puts life into an object, thing or idea, giving it existence. In the written word, truth becomes fiction and fiction imitates life, giving it a ring of truth and life.
If the inventor creates something new out of something that already exists—is it truth? When that same inventor creates something that never existed before that moment—is it truth? Is it possible they are both truth? Think of the inventions that have been created in the last twenty years. They wouldn’t exist today if someone with imagination hadn’t said, “I have an idea. I can create it. I can make it real.”
The artists among us, creates poetry, sculptures, paintings, drawings, photos, songs and music, or they put words on paper (or on the Internet for download) that becomes stories. All of these are creations—created with imagination, and it takes imagination to appreciate them.
The imagination is limitless and powerful and just like a character in a story, we can use that power in many ways. We can travel to far away lands and planets simply by picking up a book (or any e-reader). We can each look at a sculpture or painting and see either beauty where it hadn’t existed before or be repulsed. We can listen to a song and be transported back into our childhoods to a time and place that brings warm fuzzy feelings or sends us into shock with fear and terror. All of this is made possible because of our imaginations.
So, what is the truth? We know imagination exists in each of us; we each use our imagination; so in reality, only our individual imagination can give us an answer. What is your answer?
As always, I appreciate your opinions or questions. Please, leave a comment and allow me to find your words, so I can learn what has inspired you to use your imagination to create. It’s been said that writing is a lonely business and that’s true, but if we writers and readers continue to support one another, then we are no longer alone. I’d love to hear from you and learn what inspires you.
Some of my work can be found online: Here’s a direct link to my children’s story “Pack Leader” at Knowonder Magazine. http://www.knowonder.com/2011/11/03/pack-leader-short-bedtime-stories/
I also have a children’s story, “The Golden Stallion” online at http://www.storiesthatlift.com. Once on the site click on the Story Library and then Children’s Stories
In May 2012, my children’s story, “Gus’ Big Adventure” was published at Bumples Magazine. http://www.bumples.com/
In June my first adult short story, “Saving Katie” will be published at http://www.thepinkchameleon.com.