Genius is its own reward; for the best that one is, one must necessarily be for oneself. . . . Further, genius consists in the working of the free intellect., and as a consequence the productions of genius serve no useful purpose. The work of genius may be music, philosophy, painting, or poetry; it is nothing for use or profit. To be useless and unprofitable is one of the characteristics of genius; it is their patent of nobility.
I regret that I must so continually use the word genius, as if that should apply only to a caste as well defined from those below as income-tax payers are from the untaxed. The word genius was very probably invented by a man who had small claims on it himself; greater men would have understood better what to be a genius really was, and probably they would have come to see that the word could be applied to most people. Goethe said that perhaps only a genius is able to understand a genius.
Genius is by definition a style of consciousness characterized by the ability to access high energy attractor patterns. It is not a personality characteristic. It is not something that a person has, nor even something that someone is. Those in whom we recognize genius commonly disclaim it. A universal characteristic of genius is humility. The genius has always attributed his insights to some higher influence.
David R. Hawkins
The best minds come from the most unexpected faces and places. There is no image for intelligence or genius. Genius is something that cannot be seen. It cannot be produced or manufactured. It is something that even the true genius thinks is unattainable. The genius recognizes he's just a small pea in a sea of infinite atoms. Knowledge is as infinite as the universe. The man who claims to know all, only reveals to all that he really knows nothing.
The Man of Genius may at the same time be, indeed is commonly, an Artist, but the two are not to be confounded. The Man of Genius,referred to mankind, is an originator, an inspired or demonic man, who produces a perfect work in obedience to laws yet unexplored. The artist is he who detects and applies the law from observation of the works of Genius, whether of man or nature. The Artisan is he who merely applies the rules which others have detected. There has been no man of pure Genius, as there has been none wholly destitute of Genius.
Henry David Thoreau
I don't like that word 'discovery.' ... Sinatra was the first one to call Ray Charles a genius, he spoke of 'the genius of Ray Charles.' And after that everybody called him a genius. They didn't call him a genius before that though. He was a genius but they didn't call him that. ... If a white man hadn't told them, they wouldn't've seen it. ... Like, you know, they say Columbus discovered America, he didn't discover America.
He was a young man of savage and unexpected originality, a diseased genius and quite frankly, a mad genius. Imbeciles grow insane and in their insanity the imbecility remains stagnant or agitated; in the madness of a man of genius some genius often remains: the form and not the quality of intelligence has been affected; the fruit has been bruised in the fall, but has preserved all its perfume and all the savor of its pulp, hardly too ripe.
Remy de Gourmont
Because genius is a characteristic of consciousness, genius is also universal. That which is universal is, therefore, theoretically available to every man. The process of creativity and genius are inherent in human consciousness. Inasmuch as every human has within himself the same essence of consciousness, genius is a potential that resides within everyone. It awaits only the right circumstances to express it.
David R. Hawkins
Genius is answerable only to itself; it is the sole judge of the means, since it alone knows the end; thus genius must consider itself as above the law, for it is the task of genius to remake the law; moreover the man who frees himself from his time and place may take everything, hazard everything, for everything is his by right.
Honore de Balzac
It is characteristic of genius to be hopeful and aspiring. It is characteristic of genius to break up the artificial arrangements of conventionalism, and to view mankind in true perspective, in their gradations of inherent rather than of adventitious worth. Genius is therefore essentially democratic, and has always been so ...
Men give me credit for some genius. All the genius I have lies in this; when I have a subject in hand, I study it profoundly. Day and night it is before me. My mind becomes pervaded with it. Then the effort that I have made is what people are pleased to call the fruit of genius. It is the fruit of labor and thought.
Neither can we admit that definition of genius that some would propose--"a power to accomplish all that we undertake;" for we might multiply examples to prove that this definition of genius contains more than the thing defined. Cicero failed in poetry, Pope in painting, Addison in oratory; yet it would be harsh to deny genius to these men.
Charles Caleb Colton
The great genius does not let his work be determined by the concrete finite conditions that surround him, whilst it is from these that the work of the statesman takes its direction and its termination. ... It is the genius in reality and not the other who is the creator of history, for it is only the genius who is outside and unconditioned by history.
Society cannot contribute anything to the breeding and growing of ingenious men. A creative genius cannot be trained. There are no schools for creativeness. A genius is precisely a man who defies all schools and rules, who deviates from the traditional roads of routine and opens up new paths through land inaccessible before. A genius is always a teacher, never a pupil; he is always self-made.
Ludwig von Mises
But what is chance? What is genius? The words chance and genius do not denote any really existing thing and therefore cannot be defined. Those words only denote a certain stage of understanding of phenomena. I do not know why a certain event occurs; I think that I cannot know it; so I do not try to know it and I talk about chance. I see a force producing effects beyond the scope of ordinary human agencies; I do not understand why this occurs and I talk of genius. To a heard of rams, that ram the herdsman dries each evening into a special enclosure to feed, and that becomes twice as fat as the others, must seem to be a genius.
Nothing is so much coveted by a young man as the reputation of being a genius; and many seem to feel that the want of patience for laborious application and deep research is such a mark of genius as cannot be mistaken: while a real genius, like Sir Isaac Newton, with great modesty says, that the great and only difference between his mind and the minds of others consisted solely in his having more patience.
I do not despise genius-indeed, I wish I had a basketful of it. But yet, after a great deal of experience and observation, I have become convinced that industry is a better horse to ride than genius. It may never carry any man as far as genius has carried individuals, but industry-patient, steady, intelligent industry-will carry thousands into comfort, and even celebrity; and this it does with absolute certainty.
If for instance the sentiment possessing for the moment the empire of our mind is sorrow, will not the genius sharpen the sorrow and the sorrow purify the genius? Together, will they not be like a cut diamond for which language is only the wax on which they stamp their imprint? I believe that genius, thus awakened, has no need to seek out details, that it scarcely pauses to reflect, that it never thinks of unity: I believe that the details come naturally without search by the poet, that inspiration takes the place of reflection and as for unity, I think there is no unity so perfect as that which results from a heart filled with a single idea... The nature of genius is related to that of instinct; it's operation is both simple and marvelous.
The book, the college, the school of art, the institution of any kind, stop with some past utterance of genius. . . . They look backward and not forward. But genius looks forward: the eyes of man are set in his forehead, not in his hindhead: man hopes: genius creates. Whatever talents may be, if the man create not, the pure efflux of the Deity is not his; - cinders and smoke there may be, but not yet flame.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Genius: Range of mind, power of imagination, and responsiveness of soul: this is genius. The man of genius has a soul with greater range, can therefore be struck by the feelings of all beings, is concerned with everything in nature, and never receives an idea that does not evoke a feeling. Everything stirs him and everything is retained within him. When the soul has been moved by an object itself, it is even more affected by the memory of the object. But in a man of genius imagination goes further: it recalls ideas with a more vivid feeling than it received them, because to these ideas are connected a thousand others more appropriate to arouse the feeling.
Jean-Frane§ois de Saint-Lambert