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 +

Thursday, November 26, 2009

A lesson in sweetness of character.

Sweetness of character is as rare as great brilliance of mind - in fact, it is, rather sadly, probably rarer.

Yesterday, Fintan, six, was eating dinner with us. What was strange was that he only took rice and vegetables, onto his plate.

"Fintan, eat some of the curried chicken!", I urged him.

"No.", he said to me quietly, without rebellion, but with a certain firmness.

"Why not?"

"Because I don't want to dirty my plate, so that no-one has to wash it up."

As he spoke, he looked down at the cleanliness of his plate. It was unlike everyone else's around the table, in that it hadn't been "dirtied" by curry.

I was struck dumb for a moment, out of reverence for his sweetness. How many other six year olds would think so much of other people, that they would deny themselves food to make life easier for them? I knew that Fintan actually liked chicken, so it wasn't that he was avoiding it for his own interests - he was doing so to protect those of another.

"Eat the chicken, Fintan.", I said, softly, "Don't worry about your plate."

He looked at the chicken then, and reached out slowly to get some, after some inner hesitation.

Never, in all my life, have I seen anyone do as Fintan had done in that moment. I cannot, at this time, know what Fintan will become - but I hope he retains this essential sweetness of character and that it is not bashed out of him, by regular encounters with far less considerate people. Should it remain a part of him, Fintan will be one of those people that it is a pleasure to know, simply for the chance to witness the essence of their being.

Thank you, Fintan, for being as you are: a boy who would starve himself, rather than trouble another person.

(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.

We are the founders of Genghis Can, a copywriting, editing and proofreading agency, that handles all kinds of work, including technical and scientific material. If you need such services, or know someone who does, please go to: Thanks.

IMDB is the Internet Movie Database for film and tv professionals. If you would like to look at my IMDb listing for which another fifteen credits are to be uploaded, (which will probably take several months before they are accepted) please go to: As I write, the listing is new and brief - however, by the time you read this it might have a dozen or a score of please do take a look. My son, Ainan Celeste Cawley, also has an IMDb listing. His is found at: My wife, Syahidah Osman Cawley, has a listing as well. Hers is found at:

This blog is copyright Valentine Cawley. Unauthorized duplication prohibited. Use Only with Permission. Thank you.)

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posted by Valentine Cawley @ 2:11 PM 


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