I'm not sure how much you know about Edward's work, if I was to assume you are just learning, I would start by saying perhaps in some non deliberate way the mind falls upon ideas now and again (in hindsight things become logical). However, this is loose and floppy, we need forsight and often those ideas come to us at times when we say 'wow I must remember that' and then we forget the thought or push it to the back of our minds and it becomes dormant. Yes there are time we use the idea but it's limited in it's very nature.
As the brain is a self orgainising system it needs deliberate tools to help it work more efficiently and at the times when we need to focus most.
Perhaps if you have not done so you should start by reading 'Mechanisims of the Mind' and then 'Lateral Thinking' by Edward de Bono, you can get this from Amason see the link on the site.
I hope I have been some help. If I have misunderstood you and you want to discuss the issue further I'd be glad to open it to a discussion group.
Do you mean that lateral thinking is something everyone does innately? That de Bono merely came up with a name for it to describe and differentiate it and "train" it's deliberate usage?
It wouldn't be the first time that a discoverer looked at what most people take for granted and described fleeting functions. People come up with such similar descriptions regarding the same phenomena cross-culturally. What makes de Bono's work so interesting are the thinking exercises that train ability.
Or do you mean that you can't imagine the world without Lateral Thinking because you already do it so often yourself before you ever heard the word? That's often the case with people who have a talent or "bent" in a certain direction. They do what they are talented at as naturally as breathing. They take for granted that everyone must think the way they do. It can be quite a surprise, but not all people think the same.
The Mechanism of Mind was fascinating, but it is a very dense book full of theory. However, it is very high in content. It contains the ideas behind all of de Bono's later books. The book "Lateral Thinking" was much more accessible and easy to understand. But I'm speculating you've already read "Lateral Thinking"?