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Thursday, 26 May 2011

making connections

One thing that always gives me a buzz is making connections.

I love it when I'm reading something or researching something and I suddenly branch out, creating my own cross reference in my mind.  It happens when reading the bible (see my garbled thoughts here) but could apply to any area of study or research - or even light reading.  When reading a novel, for example, you will be reminded of earlier points in the story which are triggered by a new reference, a new incident.  The two combine in your mind, establishing a link, reaffirming the relevance of either or both.

Of course, when it comes to studying a topic or reading a text the connection may have been by hundreds of people already.  There may be nothing new in what you see - it may simply be new to you.  But would it have been the same - felt the same - if someone else had made the connection for you?  Would it sink in?  Would it be as memorable?

Sometimes I wonder if we are all too ready to have others make all the connections for us, to tell us where to look, to provide all the cross references we need.  These can be valuable resources, but there is a thrill in discovering something for ourselves.

I love making connections - feeling those synapses fire and fusing my thoughts in unexpected ways.  And although I like to hear and learn from others - there can be something very personally rewarding in making some of these discoveries myself.

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Perpetua said...

So true, Lucy. I love the mental ping of making a connection and strongly believe that the c0nnections we make for ourselves stay in the mind longer than those merely pointed out by others.

Emma said...

Yes, there's nothing like the excitement when your synapses start firing and suddenly two things that seemed very different are linked. (Sometimes it's just too much coffee, but occasionally it's genuine). Even if everyone else has made the connection, in some ways your discoveries only become real when you make them yourself.

I find search engines, especially for key words or verses in the Bible, really useful. But a bit of me misses the excitement of trawling through a book myself and joining the dots. It takes longer, but makes a deeper impression too.

"The desperate need today is not for a greater number of intelligent people, or gifted people, but for deep people."- Richard Foster