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Conversation with Glenn Alden on Youth, Intelligence Tests, Genius, and Personal Views: Member, Mensa International (1)


Author(s): Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Publication (Outlet/Website): In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal

Publication Date (yyyy/mm/dd): 2020/12/22


Glenn Alden is a Member of Mensa International from Norway. He discusses: growing up; an extended self; the family background; the experience with peers and schoolmates; the purpose of intelligence tests; high intelligence; the geniuses of the past; the greatest geniuses in history; a genius from a profoundly intelligent person; some work experiences; the idea of the gifted; social and political views; the God concept or gods idea; science; some of the tests taken; the range of the scores; and ethical philosophy.

Keywords: Genius, Glenn Alden, god, Norway, self.

Conversation with Glenn Alden on Youth, Intelligence Tests, Genius, and Personal Views: Member, Mensa International (1)

*Please see the footnotes, bibliography, and citation style listing after the interview.*

Scott Douglas Jacobsen: When you were growing up, what were some of the prominent family stories being told over time?

Glenn Alden [1],[2]*: Both my father and mother are born and brought up nearby the sea. They made a living by farming and fishing. These were hard times during and after world war 2. They had to participate in the work from an early age.

Jacobsen: Have these stories helped provide a sense of an extended self or a sense of the family legacy?

Alden: Without a doubt, this has affected my view of where I come from. I’m proud of my ancestry.

Jacobsen: What was the family background, e.g., geography, culture, language, and religion or lack thereof?

Alden: Neither of my parents had any formal education. Total religious freedom.

Jacobsen: How were the experiences with peers and schoolmates as a child and an adolescent?

Alden: In early childhood, I was active and social. During my youth, I became somewhat more withdrawn.

Jacobsen: What is the purpose of intelligence tests to you?

Alden: Just for fun. Has been a hobby lately.

Jacobsen: When was high intelligence discovered for you?

Alden: It was probably in the twenties. IQ testing caught my interest and I did well. Took a Mensa test in 1999 and became an approved member of Mensa international. That was when I first became aware of aberrant intelligence.

Jacobsen: When you think of the ways in which the geniuses of the past have either been mocked, vilified, and condemned if not killed, or praised, flattered, platformed, and revered, what seems like the reason for the extreme reactions to and treatment of geniuses? Many alive today seem camera shy – many, not all.

Alden: FEAR. We are herd animals. If someone comes up with ideas that threaten the known truth. That will immediately initiate fear processes among the majority within the groups. Fear leads to anger and then the ball is rolling.

Jacobsen: Who seem like the greatest geniuses in history to you?

Alden: Nikola Tesla.

Jacobsen: What differentiates a genius from a profoundly intelligent person?

Alden: Level of creativity. Level of your ability to think outside the box.

Jacobsen: What have been some work experiences and educational certifications for you?

Alden: Have been working in the oil business since 1990. Have worked my way up from Roustabolt on deck to Senior Toolpusher. In 2016 I was laid off for a period of 1.5 years. Then I got the opportunity to work as a manager on asylum reception for young asylum seekers 15 – 18 years of age. This was an extreme change in my life situation. When looking back, it was an education for life. I became much more tolerant on a deeper level. It could be tough at times, but this really gave me the opportunity to evolve as a human being.

Jacobsen: What are some of the more important aspects of the idea of the gifted and geniuses? Those myths that pervade the cultures of the world. What are those myths? What truths dispel them?

Alden: Those are the arrows. A myth might be that they are boring nerds. Elon Musk is a good example of the opposite.

Jacobsen: What are some social and political views for you? Why hold them?

Alden: I don’t have any fixed political standpoint. On the other hand, it’s easy to recognize that there is a need for political change in all camps. If I have to point out one element, it would be the freedom of speech. This is one of the most important tools to maintain democracy.

Jacobsen: Any thoughts on the God concept or gods idea and philosophy, theology, and religion?

Alden: Do not believe in anything you hear. This might set you free. As long as we are locked inside beliefs of religions, we will never be able to see the truth. God is hidden inside the truth. Most religions emphasize love, but rules with fear. I am confident on one thing. Use your brain and your heart, and seek within. Then you will find the truth.

Jacobsen: How much does science play into the worldview for you?

Alden: Mind and matter.Can one exist without the other? Are we co-creators of the universes?

Science is from my point of view our first attempt at liberation from religion.

Jacobsen: What have been some of the tests taken and scores earned (with standard deviations) for you?

Alden: Have taken a lot of tests during the last 20 years. Most spatial and verbal High Range tests. Scores have deviated between IQ 150 – 182 SD 15.

Jacobsen: What is the range of the scores for you? The scores earned on alternative intelligence tests tend to produce a wide smattering of data points rather than clusters, typically.

Alden: Unable to take these results seriously. I think most tests are too subjective. You need to be familiar with the test creators’ mindset to score higher (This is of course also a kind of intelligence).

Jacobsen: What ethical philosophy makes some sense, even the most workable sense to you?

Alden: Do more of what makes you happy.

If you treat yourself with love, you will have the best base to accommodate all the “good” values.

To force ethics in our seeking for goodness will only lead to falsehood.

Appendix I: Footnotes

[1] Member, Mensa International.

[2] Individual Publication Date: December 22, 2020:; Full Issue Publication Date: January 1, 2021:

*High range testing (HRT) should be taken with honest skepticism grounded in the limited empirical development of the field at present, even in spite of honest and sincere efforts. If a higher general intelligence score, then the greater the variability in, and margin of error in, the general intelligence scores because of the greater rarity in the population.


In-Sight Publishing by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Based on a work at


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