A few days ago, I tweeted: Creativity is not proportional to intelligence per se. Creativity is proportional to the courage to break from the status quo. @ http://twitter.com/kenmogi.
You know it took me such a long time to come to this particular realization.
The inspiration came to me when I was pondering the life of Albert Einstein. There is no doubt that Albert Einstein was a terribly intelligent man. How else could one bring about an evolution such as the theory of relativity into the world? I actually decided to become a scientist because I was infected by the marvel of the "Einsteinian" intellect.
However, it cannot be said that the achievement of Albert Einstein is due to his intellect alone. He was a remarkably courageous man. At a time when the education at German speaking schools was conducted in an authoritarian manner, Albert Einstein rebelled against the system. He traveled around Europe alone, after dropping out of the Gymnasium.
When choosing the subject of study, he went off the beaten track and pursued his inspiration in the teens concerning what would happen if you followed light with the speed of light. Because he did not go along the status quo, or the powers that be, he could not get a job at the university, but worked at the patent office instead.
All these rough drives of life did not make Albert Einstein wince. He continued with his brave journey of investigation, and succeeded in creating a brand new way to look at the space-time.
When you ponder the life of Albert Einstein, you realize that creativity is proportional to the courage to break from the status quo.
The Albert Einstein T-shirt that I sometimes wear to get around in Tokyo.