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 +

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Fintan's emotional perception.

Sometimes the questions children ask alter the way a parent sees the world. They are questions which bring home a truth that, perhaps, had been overlooked.

A few days ago, Fintan, five, asked one such question.

He was sitting quietly with his mother, when he turned to her with query in his eyes.

"Why do people look so happy when they are going to the circus, but the animals look so sad?"

The question quite startled his mother, for there was a deep truth in his implicit observation. It is no fun being a caged animal, no matter how much the crowd might enjoy it.

Fintan is a close observer of the world. Sometimes, he sees things which are easy to overlook. Often, he surprises with his questions because they are of a moral, or philosophical or ethical nature. These are not the questions one expects of a five year old. They are questions that show he sees the world through moral eyes, emotional eyes, ethical eyes. He is not only seeing the world for what it is, but asking what it should be. He is questioning the way things are, from a moral perspective and judging it, for emotional value.

It is interesting to see his preoccupation with such questions. Part of him is showing a social maturity that is welcome to see. It is what allows him to get on with everyone he meets. Often, people extend to him an open invitation to visit. What is he doing right, that makes him so popular? Well, that kind of question says it all. Fintan is a young boy who is thinking about feelings, emotions, moral values, what is right and what is wrong, what is good and what is not. He is thinking about human conduct - and, beneath it all, seems to hold the value that all should be happy.

Obviously, the character that he has now is but the rudiment of what he is to be. However, I can see that this root promises to be a tree of solid character and human insight. I look forward to knowing, one day, the man he promises to be.

(If you would like to learn more of Ainan Celeste Cawley, a scientific child prodigy, aged eight years and seven months, or his gifted brothers, Fintan, five years exactly, and Tiarnan, twenty-eight 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.

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posted by Valentine Cawley @ 11:38 PM 


Blogger Miao said...

Fintan is a philanthropist in the making.

12:52 AM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

That would be good to see. Thanks.

7:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So sweet. Very heartening. Coincidentally, I had a brief conversation today with my 4-year-old today about some books (circus themed) that we had read. She said she believes that "they look kinda sad, because they are trapped in the cages." Kids have such sensitive souls... I do hope things won't catch up with Fintan's instincts, to loosely quote To Kill A Mockingbird.

3:03 PM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

I hope so, too: the character that he has now, has admirable qualities that I would like to see him maintain.

Best wishes to you and your own sweet kid!

8:30 PM  

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