Mapping Intelligence

Psalm 119:105
“Thy word [is] a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.”

Picture yourself sitting in a friend’s living room. Can you picture in your mind where the door is located? Scientists call this a thought map. Thought maps are mental pictures of the arrangement of objects relative to one another.

Thought maps help us remember where to find a water glass, the gas or brake pedal, and home. Thought maps require intelligence. They help make possible additional intelligent activity, such as finding our way around and conducting an intelligent search. This is why scientists have been surprised to find that many creatures, not just humans, use thought maps.

One experimenter carried a chimpanzee on his back while he hid 18 pieces of food in a field. Then the chimp and five others were released in the field to find the food. The chimp who had seen the hiding places found most of the food, following a very different route than that originally taken by the researcher. Bees, likewise, use mental maps. Even if a bee is forced to detour on its way back to the hive, it always reports the food source as though it had used a direct route. Bees are also able to find a food source that has been moved after its discovery. Ants have also been shown to use mental maps.

Mental maps help humans and animals think deductively about changes in the environment. Mental mapping ability could not have evolved because even the lowliest creature requires this ability to survive. This ability must have been given to them in the first place by their Creator.

Prayer: Father in heaven, I thank You that You have made me and the whole creation. Natural laws could not have made us, especially with such wisdom. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

Ref: Miller, Julie Ann. 1984. “Mind maps.” Science News, v. 125, Jan. 28. p. 62. Photo: Bee –

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