Friday, January 30, 2004

AI: Artificial Intelligence

Whew! Today... uh, I mean, yesterday turned out to be busier that I expected. I didn't get a chance to update. Oh well.

Consummate_Leah brought up aninteresting topic: Intelligence. Apparently, she has begun to look at men using intelligence as crucial component in determining a man. I think she said something like she is more interested in a man who thinks about life than the kind of rims he wants on his car...

I must agree with her: Intelligence is VERY important. But intelligence must be more finely defined. Leah gave a Webster's dictionary definition:

\In*tel"li*gence\, n. [F. intelligence, L. intelligentia, intellegentia. See Intelligent.] 1. The act or state of knowing; the exercise of the understanding. 2. The capacity to know or understand; readiness of comprehension; the intellect, as a gift or an endowment.

Now, "knowing" and "understanding" and "comprehension" can refer to quite different things. I think that most would consider "intelligence" as understanding "facts." For example, a person who comprehends the Newton's law of physics or Einstein's law of relativity is likely to be intelligent. One who can explain existentialism and metaphysics intelligibly would certainly be intelligent in my books. Of course, this is not everything. Intelligence should also encompass some of the more mundane aspects of life. We should all be intelligent enough to know who the Secretary of State is, what H2O stands for, when the Declaration of Independence was signed (supposedly), where Tehran is, and why the Chicago Cubs didn't go to the World Series. We should also be intelligent enough to stop at a red light, keep the safety on on a loaded gun, and never piss into the wind.

And yet, this is not the type of intelligence I find the most important in a mate. My former wife has a Ph.D., spoke Japanese and English fluently and certainly looked both ways before crossing the street. But she didn't "know". She didn't "understand".

There's another kind of "knowing", another kind of "understanding". And that's the capacity to "know" when I'm upset, to be ready to "comprehend my "feelings", to excercise "understanding" by asking me questions when they need to be asked. This kind of personal intelligence is something that I didn't understand until I met Musubi-chan. She "understands" me perfectly... uh, sometimes too perfectly. She knows what I'm feeling, comprehends virtually everything I'm thinking, sometimes even before I think it--which has been scary sometimes, but amazing nonetheless. And I try to reciprocate in kind--although I must admit to not being totally competent in this area yet. Andwhile it is proving to be as challenging as the Ph.D. dissertation I toiled over (300+ pp.), I am trying....

So what critieria do you use for intelligence in your partner?

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