Thinking Clearly through Writing

Ask any wise person some advice about improving our thinking process. Almost certainly one will be to write what we think. Writing and thinking clearly are closely related to each other.

Maybe a systematic flow of ideas from the mind to the page/screen creates a momentum. Or maybe downloading the stuff from one’s short-term memory frees the mind to visualize the previously hidden aspects of the problem. Just like a curved road where we can view the route only to the end of the curve in each subsequent stage.

Let us ask a question here. Does writing have the same effect if we do it with closed eyes?

I think that the answer is no. In addition to providing more free processing power to think, looking into what we have written generates new dimensions of thinking that would not have been there otherwise.

Writing illuminates the brain.

I find an interesting analogy between this process and a closed circuit. In the figure above, the current flows in the closed circuit illuminating the light bulb. Here is what happens when we write what we are thinking:

Ideas get transferred from the mind to the hand on to the page/screen which in turn gets read by our eyes and sent back into the mind as input, thus completing the loop. This flow of invisible ‘current’ then illuminates our mind similar to that light bulb.


  1. Iqbal

    Having being done one on one tutoring for many years, I can easily vouch for that. There is a huge difference in one’s understanding when someone reads solved examples in the book as compared to doing them (writing them) by hand. It is no surprise that every big thinker of their times is known by his/her written work more than any other contribution.

  2. Yasir

    Reminds me of first revelation:
    “Who teaches by means of the pen, teaches man what he does not know” 96:4-5
    Interesting to note that its not said that He teaches by means of “book”, but by means of “pen”. And probably “teaches man what he does not know” part is indicating towards what your said “what we have written generates new dimensions” in the article

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