Albert Rothenberg MD is an American psychiatrist who has carried out long term research on the creative process in literature, art, science and psychotherapy.
Albert was especially interested in cognitive processes that disrupt the past and the usual and lead to creation.
He identified a process he termed “Janusian thinking,” named after Janus, a Roman God who has two faces, each looking in the opposite direction. Janusian thinking is the ability to imagine two opposites or contradictory ideas, concepts, or images, existing simultaneously. It is a thought experiment.
And we care about this because....
...More and more experts in diverse fields believe that the 21st century requires non linear problem solving.
For example, in a 2002 article in Military Review, two military strategists wrote "that the current U.S. approach to military operations ... is too linear for today’s contemporary operating environment. They argue that future war fighters must move beyond linear thought and action to a realm of thinking and acting that recognizes and accepts paired yet opposite ideas and actions: 'Look before you leap' and at the same time understand that 'he who hesitates is lost.'"
Think about it.