Monday, January 23, 2017

I found Italo Calvino's description of imagination very interesting and intriguing.  He presents the concept of imagination in a couple different ways.  The reading begins with a relation to Dante when he discusses "high fantasy".  This seems to be a more complex side of imagination, different from simple tasks such as dreamer.  It constitutes higher order thought.  Calvino then goes on to describe two types of the process of imagination, "the one that starts with the word and arrives at the visual language, and the one that starts with the visual image and arrives at its verbal expression" (83).  I thought this was very easy for any member of society to relate to.  While we can read words on a page in a book and create a mental image of the passage, we can also see an image and describe its details and how we interpret it.  Calvino also discusses imagination related to St. Ignatius of Loyola and Christianity.  The idea of using imagination through meditation and contemplation appears extremely rational and helpful.  Loyola wishes that his followers are completing his spiritual exercises and imagining before themselves physical places and metaphorical goals, or even sins, that are a part of their lives.

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