The Altshuller Institute

for TRIZ Studies

The most influential writer in the history of writing, Homer, described Genrikh Altshuller when he wrote these immortal words:

"And what he greatly thought, he nobly dared."

But the world knows nothing of its greatest men. The heights that they reached were not attained by sudden flight. While their companions could only marvel, they toiled upward in the night of the unknowable, striving to make it knowable - for all to benefit. Altshuller was such a man.

John Donne wrote that "Any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind; and therefore, never send to know 'for whom the bell tolls'; It tolls for thee." Even more so does the passing of Genrikh Altshuller touch us all. He dedicated his life to a cause that dramatically raised - and continues to raise - the level of society. He initiated, and carried through, a revolution. He accomplished this task with all the odds against him, at every turn in his career. In this respect, he is the ultimate example of the "creative personality" that he studied and introduced in his writings.

Genrikh Altshuller has completed his role; nevertheless, he will be sorely missed. Sir Walter Scott warmly observes:

"And the stately ships go on
To their haven under the hill;
But O, for the touch of a vanished hand,
And the sound of a voice that is still!"

But what of us who remain? We shall continue to meet, but we shall also miss him. There will be one vacant chair; It would be difficult - no, it is impossible - for anyone to sit in that chair. We shall linger to caress him, when we breathe a grateful prayer.

It is for others who were his closest friends to reminisce about their personal relationships with him. I never knew him personally, but I know him well, by his results - by his creative output - by his dedication to the truth, and to the betterment of the world as a place in which to live.

I dedicate this touching little poem by Hafiz to the memory of Genrikh Altshuller.

"Little sleeper, the spring is here;
Tulip and rose will come again,
Only you in the earth remain,
Sleeping, dear.
Little sleeper, the spring is here;
I, like a cloud of April rain,
Am bending over your grave in vain,
Weeping, dear.
Little flower, the spring is here;
What if my tears were not in vain!
What if they drew you up again,
Little Flower!"

Genrikh Altshuller has been "drawn up again" - forever to flower and decorate the landscape of the present and of the future - in each of us, and in our children. He resides in our minds, in our experiences, in our capabilities, and most importantly, he will continue to reside in our hearts. May he have a safe journey. -- by James Kowalik, Renaissance Leadership Institute


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