Persons of the Dialogue
"But when is intensity called for?" asked Student.
"In thought," said Monk.
"Do you think when you're alone or in company?"
"Thinking is a solitary activity," he said with a touch of disgust.
"You don't have to think when you're talking to people?"
"Yes, but there are people, and then there are zombies."
"How can you tell the difference?"
Monk narrowed his eyes. "You don't know?"
"Of course he knows," said Director. "Tell him what a zombie is, Student."
"It's someone who no longer remembers how to think."
Monk considered this. "You mean we all know how to think when we are born, and it's just that some, many, forget?"
"No, I don't believe everyone knows how to think at some point. Thinking is a learned activity. Not everyone, by a far cry, learns."
"What does it take to learn to think?" asked Director.
"Intense experience, to push the mind to it."
"You mean like being born?"
Monk frowned and said nothing.
"Suppose it takes more than that," said Director. "Surely there are people who suffer trauma in life but don't learn how to think as a result."
Nick Pappas, pappasnick.typepad.com