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Spiritual Intelligence

Today's subject was to be "Spiritual Intelligence." However, I think it is necessary to, firstly, illustrate my attitudes toward intelligence and I will attempt to write about spiritual intelligence, tomorrow.

What is intelligence, anyway? I grew up in the US and every US student, who wishes to go to university, must take an exam, called the SAT (scholastic aptitude test), which cover multiple areas and for which, the students are allocated several hours for completion. A score of 800, in each section, was the maximum possible score. I completed all sections in less than a half hour and scored 800, in each section.

All my life I've been registering scores like that, so that I have the complacent feeling that I'm highly intelligent, and I expect other people to think so, too. Actually, though, don't such scores simply mean that I am very good at answering the type of academic questions that are considered worthy of answers by people, who make up the intelligence tests - people, with intellectual talents similar to mine?

For instance, after school I would hang out at an auto-repair garage, which was owned by a family friend, who, on these intelligence tests, could not possibly have scored more than 400, by my estimate. I always took it for granted that I was far more intelligent than he. Yet, I was always impressed by his ability to diagnose and repair any automobile.

Suppose my auto-repair friend devised questions for an intelligence test. Or, suppose a carpenter did, or a farmer, or, indeed, almost anyone but an academician. By every one of those tests, I'd prove myself much less intelligent. In a world where I could not use my academic training and my verbal talents but had to do something intricate or hard, working with my hands, I would do poorly. My intelligence, then, is not absolute but is a function of the society in which I live and of the fact that a small subsection of that society has managed to insert itself on the rest, as an arbiter of such matters.

Consider my auto-repair friend, again. He had a habit of telling me jokes.. One time he raised his head from under the automobile hood to say: "Denis, a deaf-and-mute guy went into a hardware store to ask for some nails. He put two fingers together on the counter and made hammering motions with the other hand. The clerk brought him a hammer. He shook his head and pointed to the two fingers he was hammering. The clerk brought him nails. He picked out the sizes he wanted, and left. Well, Denis, the next guy who came in was a blind man. He wanted scissors. How do you suppose he asked for them?"

Indulgently, I lifted by right hand and made scissoring motions, with my first two fingers. Whereupon my friend laughed raucously and said, "Why, you dumb jerk, He used his voice and asked for them." Then he said smugly, "I've been trying that on all my customers today." "Did you catch many?" I asked. "Quite a few," he said, "but I knew for sure I'd catch you." "Why is that?" I asked. "Because you're so intelligent, I knew you couldn't be very smart."

And I have an uneasy feeling he had something there.

Any questions??