Oprah: How does the integration of meaning help us rule this new kingdom?
Daniel: Everything big begins with a conversation. Those assembling the conversation are the ones who shape our experiences. One conversation turns into another and another. That contagious conversation is what changes the world.
Oprah: Is that why you wrote this book—to start a conversation?
Daniel: Yes. In our hyperconnected world, authors get the first word—but they definitely don't get the last one. For me, a great day is when I get an e-mail from someone who says, "I've never felt like I was taken seriously, but after reading this, I think I'll be all right." And in the book, there's an exercise in which I ask the reader to picture himself or herself at age 90—what are your regrets? What did you do right? One of my favorite responses came from a reader who wrote, "Dear Mr. Pink, I enjoyed A Whole New Mind, but I have to take issue with the picture-yourself-at-90 exercise—you see, I'm 91."
Oprah: Daniel, what do you know for sure?
Daniel: These right-brain abilities are more than a way to get ahead in today's economy. They're part of what it means to be human. Everybody has the capacity to develop them. And if we encourage people to tap the right side of their brains, we have the potential to transform our world—to make ourselves not just better off but just plain better.