Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.
Proverbs 22:6 ESV
Here is a very brief summary of what developmental psychologist Howard Gardner, Hobbs Professor of Cognition and Education at Harvard Graduate School of Education, has written on The Theory of Multiple Intelligences:
INTERPERSONAL (“People Smart”) understanding the moods, desires, motivations, and intentions of others.
INTRAPERSONAL (“Self Smart”) figuring out one’s own moods, desires, motivations and intentions through introspection.
KINESTHETIC (“Body Smart”) using one's own body to create products or solve problems.
LINGUISTIC (“Word Smart”) analyzing information and producing work involving oral and written language.
MATHEMATICAL (“Logic Smart”) developing equations and proofs, making calculations, and solving abstract problems.
MUSICAL (“Music Smart”) producing and making meaning of different types of sounds.
NATURALISTIC (“Nature Smart”) identifying and distinguishing among different types of plants, animals, and weather formations in the natural world.
VISUAL (“Picture Smart”) comprehending maps and other types of graphical information.
These different kinds of intelligences are helpful indicators and directional arrows about how we are each designed to contribute uniquely to the world around us. However, I am one of many who support the idea that there is a “ninth intelligence” that exists which should be added to the list. I believe this type of intelligence is—Existential Intelligence—which I have dubbed “Soul Smart.”
*EXISTENTIAL (“Soul Smart”) conceptualizing deep philosophical questions, such as the origin of mankind, what constitutes consciousness, and man’s purpose on earth. *This type of intelligence has been alluded to by Gardner in several of his works, but he has not fully confirmed, endorsed, or described this intelligence.
In my experience Existential intelligence not only exists but it infuses all the other intelligences with meaning and motivation. God is behind everything that exists! My life certainly is a testimony to it and an amplification of it!