ART AND PSYCHOLOGY – AN ANALOGY

We had different forms of art which are unique in their own nature and the same art form is performed by different artists in different ways. How unique each one is! Let us take the art form of painting as an example. Every painting is unique which are painted with the same set of colours. Simply through studying the nature and characteristics of colours and colour combinations we don’t learn painting. A painting is far more superior and complex than the colours we use.

We spend a lot of time studying the fundamental nature of colours, the science of colour combinations etc. We are taught with a lot of technical jargons like hue, grey scale, wavelength and its definitions. We develop it into a full grown stream of science and gets ourselves satisfied. We also find avenues for specialisations in that subject. We feel ourselves proud looking at the vast knowledge that we have in that particular stream of study. We would also apply the latest modern computer technology into it.

But still one could see a poor painter in his shabby attire sitting in the corner of his house or in the street who paints magnificent paintings without even learning the basics of science that he is “supposed to learn.”

We talk all about the technicalities and keeps silence when it comes to creativity because we failed to establish a science of creativity in full swing. This happens because creativity is hard to study through the current scientific methods. We run after creativity to put it into the box of scientific method which we think is the only way to develop knowledge - the only valid means of knowing. It is the creativity of the painter that is appreciated more by the viewers.

Now let us take psychology and its main area of study i.e. human behaviour. Just as in the art form mentioned earlier, we made rigorous studies in the field of Psychology and developed a vast amount of knowledge through scientific methods. Not underestimating the progress it had made – we still find it difficult to find effective, guaranteed solutions for the psychological and related problems that people face in their daily life. We talk about the probabilities in terms of statistics. But our clients need easy to use solutions for which we have to journey a lot. We also tend to make things and situations that are simple into more complex ones and make rigorous studies on the ways to solve it.

It is a question whether we need to change our approach towards Psychology to make it more human friendly. It should be something like a form of art-as mentioned earlier- that calls for more creativity. We should never forget that each individual is unique and statistics may lead you to misleading conclusions at times. We need to think whether a different approach towards means of knowing may make our field of study better. This may include an inter-disciplinary approach, rethinking the strict adherence to scientific methods, inclusion of creativity in an effective manner into our field of study etc.


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