I’ve been using Mind Maps for years … until I don’t really know how to do note-taking or note-making in a traditional linear form (unless I’m forced to). It’s a great tool, and for me it’s more fun giving freedom to use colors and images. But I think what is more interesting is the thinking behind the tool. And this is where I find my mental horizons have expanded.
When I was preparing for a workshop for some youth at youth center called Dropzone a couple of weeks ago, doing some revision on the book was helpful .. what excited me beyond the mind mapping was the way of thinking behind the tool – which is Radiant thinking. Check out An Exclusive Interview With Tony Buzan, here’s a comment as an appetizer:
“Most people are trained to think in a linear way, thinking of one thing, then the next thing, and then the next, in a series of singular associations in one direction.
The way our minds really work is in multiple thoughts and multiple directions at the same time. The way the brain fundamentally thinks is radiant, meaning that it thinks primarily from image centers, and then radiates out.”
I can relate to the above 🙂 That’s why I’ve been using Mind Maps all these years. But let me give you the definition of Radiant Thinking in the book:
“Radiant Thinking (from ‘to radiate’, meaning ‘to spread or move in directions, or from a given centre’) refers to associative thought processes that proceed from or connect to a central point. The other meanings of ‘radiant’ are also relevant: ‘shining brightly’, ‘the look of bright eyes beaming with joy and hope’ and ‘the focal point of a meteoric shower’ – similar to the ‘burst of thought’.” (p. 54, BBC edition)
The tool and technique is merely the surface. Another way of saying it is the practice is merely the tip of the iceberg of a way of thinking – a thinking process which is not only useful for education but also looking at life. So often, we get stuck because we have ways of thinking which restricts us from seeing the possibilities forward or even more basic, seeing the connections which actually could untangle our “no way out” or “no choice” kind of approach in life.
I’ll leave this post with a little sample mind map I did for a 2 hour homiletics class I was invited to share at Seminari Theoloji Malaysia last Tuesday. Click on the thumbnail to get a larger image.