The boy who knew too much: a child prodigy

This is the true story of scientific child prodigy, and former baby genius, Ainan Celeste Cawley, written by his father. It is the true story, too, of his gifted brothers and of all the Cawley family. I write also of child prodigy and genius in general: what it is, and how it is so often neglected in the modern world. As a society, we so often fail those we should most hope to see succeed: our gifted children and the gifted adults they become. Site Copyright: Valentine Cawley, 2006 +

Monday, June 23, 2008

The Value of An Individual

I came across something rather saddening recently. It was a blogger writing of his opinion that he had nothing worthwhile to say - because others "wrote better" than he did. He listed several Chinese names - and my own name, which is why I came across his blog.

Now, the first thing that occurred to me, on reading this, is that he was unaware of his own value, as an individual. He writes about things others never could - because they have never been, and never will be, him. He may consider what others write to be more "worthy" - but that does not make what he writes worthless. None of those that he praises by picking out as being "good writers" could have written his blog posts - for his posts come from his life, his views, his understandings and his experiences.

It is easy to forget, in a competitive world, that, in one sense, none of us have any competition at all. We are all unique. There will never be another "us". We will live but once and then be no more. Nothing can be more valuable, therefore, than the individual - for each of us is irreplaceable and inexchangeable by any other, ever.

So, to all those bloggers and other creatives out there (for blogging, at its best, is a creative activity, or should be), do not ever feel diminished by the greatness of another. No other can be you. No other can write, think, feel, act as you do. Whatever you do comes from whatever you are - and there is only one like you - and that is the one you see in the mirror every morning.

Should that blogger ever read this page, I would urge him to write on - and express the unique self that he possesses. I would urge the same call to express the self, upon all others. In whatever way you can express who you are, you should do so - for no-one will ever again be as you are. Make your uniqueness count: express it.

(If you would like to learn more of Ainan Celeste Cawley, a scientific child prodigy, aged eight years and five months, or his gifted brothers, Fintan, four years and ten months, and Tiarnan, twenty-seven months, please go to: I also write of gifted education, IQ, intelligence, the Irish, the Malays, Singapore, College, University, Chemistry, Science, genetics, left-handedness, precocity, child prodigy, child genius, baby genius, adult genius, savant, wunderkind, wonderkind, genio, гений ребенок prodigy, genie, μεγαλοφυία θαύμα παιδιών, bambino, kind)

Labels: , , , , ,

AddThis Social Bookmark Button
posted by Valentine Cawley @ 9:55 PM 


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Even sadder is that I, and may other locals, can relate to the blogger.

for most of our lives we have to conform. To chase the "Singaporean Dream". And to have all the Cs and then to realise its not your dream. to realise that u have been living a lie. To realise that u are less then a sim in simcity. To be mentally\emotionally chained to this island.

to be forever stuck in a vicious cycle of trying to tread above water. to meet the expectations of ur frens\spouse\family and not ur own. to continue to live a lie.

to realise how pathetically weak you are that you are unable to break free.

to realise that u are not an individual. to have some angmoh wonder why u are such a pathetic\sad\wanker.

Can I blame the First chinese emperor for not doing a good job when he was exterminating the confucian *scholars*?


3:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Even brilliant minds can get trapped in a weak voice, a stifled spirit, and under-confidence. It's difficult for those of us, bound by the fear of judgment and criticism, to really break free of ourselves to actually do/produce/express.

I'm guilty of letting my thoughts just sit there. On those rare occasions where I can actually get out of my head and give form to my ideas, usually through writing or music, it feels like I'm letting my soul breathe for a little bit.

Sure. A critic can judge form and presentation (the surface) but he or she cannot critique the true substance--as you explained the unique life experiences, original thoughts, emotions, and the "self" put into that work. Very nice point!!

4:00 PM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

Dear Anonymous,

I have always considered conformity a terrible thing. I have never met a conformist who led an interesting life. There is a big price to pay for such submission of the self to other.

I hope that this nation awakens to the possibility of people being themselves. It is a much better situation.

Confucianism does sound problematic from the human point of view. (The individual human).

Best wishes

8:19 PM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

Yes, the uniqueness of the self is too often undervalued - when, in fact, nothing is more valuable. I would like to see more of it on show in Singapore (and other conformist parts of the world).

Best wishes

8:20 PM  
Anonymous guojun said...

Is it then not suprising, considering how it is always masses before individual, the Quitter Debate, and so on, that conformity is stressed in Singapore?

One who wishes to go home early after work dares not to, because he/she doesn't conform. In stressing conformity, though, the population has remained largely controllable...

9:12 PM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

Enforcing conformity creates a weakened population who cannot be excellent as they might have done. You end up with a lesser nation than the one you would have had, I would suggest.

It does, as you point out, make the people more controllable however. The price is that the country will always be far from truly first rate (as much as it might claim to be so, most loudly).

To be first rate, you must first let the people be themselves. Then they will become great, in their own good time.

10:25 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape