To classify one person as intelligent and the other person as unintelligent or dumb as most teachers and parents do on the day children bring home their report cards is not right! Not only does it demoralize the child who will get all the insults for being dumb, it also isn’t a ‘politically correct’ statement.

Now test and exams do not measure a person’s ability to think or to adapt what he has learned in a new environment, rather, it asks individuals to memorize facts and recognize patterns. This is very far from what intelligence is.  Please recall that intelligence is of three subsets: creative, analytical and practical. This means that when a child is good in school, he is prominently analytically intelligent.

To understand what makes a man intelligent, then it is important to consider him in a wholesome way and identify the skills that he so easily acquire or use to solve his problem.

As a child, I kept a diary to document the fears, uncertainty and changes that I faced during teenage. Yet, I was tagged it as ‘the less intelligent one’. My sister would always be first in our class because she could memorise facts yet she hated writing anything and wouldn’t pick a pen to save her life. So, we did a trade: I would write her English assignments and notes for her and She will do my math and science assignment.

The lesson is that I was creatively intelligent and was analytically intelligent. You can be intelligent in any other way.  I paraphrased a Quora contributor thus:

Can you–

  • Think logically (mathematical intelligence)
  • Socialize well and communicate with other people (social intelligence)
  • Talk in front of a crowd (rhetorical intelligence)
  • Play sports and take care of your body (physical intelligence)
  • Understand how other people feel and what they think (psychological intelligence)
  • Get good ideas (Innovative Intelligence)
  • Make music and keeping the rhythm (musical intelligence)

A man is intelligent by a measure of how he handles his troubles and challenges that life throws at him. Some make music to ease their pain, some get some great crazy ideas, others use people to get out of whatever tight corner they
are in…That is what makes them intelligent!

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