By G Eaton. 
Last modified : 21 February, 2003

More will be added to this page, but for now, here are a few ideas and links to other helpful websites on this topic.

What does the Bible have to say about Creativity?

Not a lot directly, but there are many references to God the Creator, and the wonders of His Creation.
"When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place..." (Psa 8:3 NIV) 

Also, since mankind was created in the image of God, experience shows us that one aspect of His nature that is a part of our nature, is this ability to think, work, produce and express creatively.
"So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them." (Gen 1:27 NIV) 

And Paul refers to us, the members of Christ's Body, the Church, as His masterpiece!
"For we are His masterpiece, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand in order that we would walk in them. "  Eph. 2:10

Greek word in this verse: poiema : Workmanship, Handiwork, Masterpiece, something that is made, written or composed, like a poem.


What is Creativity?

Macquarie Dictionary (an Australian dictionary)

create: to evolve from one's one thought or imagination to make by investing with new character or functions.

create: author, bring into being, compose, conceive, parent, form, give rise to, throw together

creative: generative, ground-breaking, innovative, originate, handmade

Other related words re: creativity:

creativity creativeness, formativeness, innovation, inventiveness, originality, productivity, craftsmanship, authorship, creatorship


Am I creative?

Every living, breathing human being has the potential to be creative. Each of us is a unique individual capable of comes with the human territory. We are, simply, quite a creative species.

All people can be creative but those who are recognized as being creative have an awareness that others don't. Creative people seem to be able to tune in more to their thought patterns and glean great ideas. People who do not use their creative potential don't know how to do this or aren't even aware it is possible. Creative people can start thinking about something, then forget it.

Meanwhile, their brains are still thinking about it. Later on, the person will start thinking about whatever it was again and their brain will say, "Excuse me, I've been thinking about this while you were off doing other things and I have a few ideas. Care to hear them?" Non- creative people don't know that their brains are working for them off- shift -- they don't know what they don't know!

There are many components that influence the creativity of individuals. This is not to say that people tremendously fluctuate in their creativity day to day and hour to hour; the opposite is often believed - that some individuals are generally more creative most of the time than others.

What can I do to increase my creativity?

The simplest answer of all, based on the power of our subconscious is "Take a walk". How may ideas have you had while you were jogging, walking, gardening, washing the dishes or driving? Our subconscious mind is constantly processing the ideas and stimuli received consciously. A useful technique is to actively work on a problem before going to sleep, allowing the subconscious to take over. Review any ideas when you awake, and make sure you have a pad and pen by your bed to record the ideas.


Enhancing Creative Competency

What do people need to learn (and do) in order to systematically enhance their individual and collective creative competencies?

The first step to improving your creativity is understanding and accepting the fact that you are a creative person, and that you are capable of being even more creative -- you can improve your creativity with practise and concentration, but first must come a basic belief in your ability to be creative...

Don't be afraid of failing with any given avenue of exploration; even a negative result from one line of questioning can lead to a new idea or new possibility.

Be open to alternate solutions as they occur

Keep a journal of some kind to record ideas as they occur to you.

Learn to recognize your own abilities so that you have some sense of the areas of a given problem that may give you difficulty or require more energy to solve. Sometimes tackling the difficult areas first is wise so that your energies are high; other times, leaving the less well understood problems until later in the process can allow your 'backbrain' or subconscious time to gestate solutions...

You must also be aware that at some point in the creative process you must begin to sort through these various ideas, evaluate their utility to the problem at hand, and converge on a solution. Do not be distressed if you must discard what seems to be a good idea or solution due to the constraints of the current problem or project. Save those ideas for another project or later work of art.

Creativity is an inner state, but it is also a social aspect of life. We do not create for oneself, otherwise our work will be kept in our mind. Even people that hide their works are socializing it by putting them down on paper, canvas, etc. It is important to understand the social implications of creativity. It is very interesting to watch pop artists go on stage, music being the most social form of art...

Creativity is socially framed, as much for our individual expression and our social expression of it. A technique is just a technique if it is not understood in the social context which gives meaning to the creative person it has helped. As far as I know, it is very recent that there are researchers that are interested in the social aspect of creativity.


Obstacles to creativity

bulletBeing too busy and getting too involved with a problem
bulletHaving conflicting goals and objectives
bulletNot allowing yourself enough time to relax
Competition in the present environment can hamper motives for creative output. Concerns with job advancement or opportunities as opposed to job stability or security may affect motives to be creative at work...

Most of the obstacles to creativity can be found within you.
bulletFear of criticism
bulletLack of confidence
bulletState of mind/body (for example experiencing negative stress)

The main thing that hinders creative thinking is our belief that we are not creative. Look at it this way. If you tell yourself: "I am a creative person", then you have to have beliefs about yourself that support that identity. If you tell yourself, "I am just an ordinary human being", then you will have a different set of beliefs. Once you have a particular identity and set of beliefs about yourself, you will become interested in seeking out the skills needed to express your identity and beliefs. If you believe that you are "uncreative", then there is no need to learn how to become creative.