The Different Types of Intelligence

A while back, I wrote a post about leveraging your strengths and working to improve your weaknesses.

I was browsing online when I came across a great blog post that further explains what I was getting at. Below is an excerpt from the original post written by Saif Farooqi:

“One of the ways of self-realization is the understanding that there are many intelligences and not just one. An individual who is good in mathematical abilities is considered to be intelligent and an individual who is good in writing and linguistic abilities is also considered to be intelligent. Both are intelligent in their own ways. Saying that the former is more intelligent than the latter, or vice versa, will be incorrect.

Howard Gardner, the educational psychologist, has talked about this extensively in his well-known theory of Multiple Intelligences. Gardner, in his theory, suggests that rather than one there are eight to nine intelligences. These intelligences are:

  • Linguistic Intelligence: The ability to communicate well, orally or in writing.
  • Logical-mathematical Intelligence: The capacity to use numbers effectively, to learn higher mathematics, and to handle complex logical arguments.
  • Spatial Intelligence: The ability to perceive the visual-spatial world accurately and to perform transformations upon those perceptions.
  • Bodily-kinesthetic Intelligence: The ability to use one’s physical body well.
  • Musical Intelligence: The capacity to perceive, discriminate, transform, and express musical forms.
  • Interpersonal Intelligence: The ability to sense other’s feelings and be in tune with others.
  • Intrapersonal Intelligence: It includes self-knowledge, having an accurate picture of oneself, and the ability to understand one’s own body and mind.
  • Naturalistic Intelligence: The ability to understand different species, recognize patterns in nature, and classify natural objects.
  • Existential Intelligence: The capacity to locate oneself with respect to such existential features of the human condition such as the significance of life, and the meaning of death.

Each individual possesses all the intelligences, but show inclinations towards at least two or three of them. Realization that there are more than one intelligences coupled with the identification of a combination of specific intelligences that one is more inclined towards, helps to a great extent in self-realization. Learning that goes in line with these intelligences strengthens one’s abilities, and gives a clearer picture of one’s goals in life, which sets the individual on a suitable and fulfilling career path.”

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