I ask this question because I have noticed
a curious phenomenon: some people make a point of claiming, online, that
originality does not exist. I have seen this many times. Sometimes, they then
go on to extol the virtues of finding ideas in the works of others. They seem
to think that this is the only way to find ideas. Typically, they then
generalize what they do – find ideas in others’ works – and state their strong
belief, that that is what everyone does. Therefore, they conclude, originality
does not exist. They even sometimes mock the idea of the concept, as if those
who believe in originality are being naive or uninformed.
I find all this very odd. It is most
obvious what is happening here. Those who do not believe in originality do not
do so, precisely because they realize that they, themselves, are not original.
They then, in a rather odd leap, conclude that since they are not original, and
develop everything from borrowed ideas – that everyone else must do the same –
hence their conclusion that originality does not exist. People see the world as
they are themselves. Yet, the world is not like us. The world consists of
billions of different people, each of whom is unlike us. It makes no sense to
generalize across this mass of others, and believe – as they do – that everyone
has the same process for creation.
I look at the world in a different way. I
believe in originality because I have known the phenomenon personally, in my
own life and in the lives of people known to me. I know original people. I see
their thoughts and their works and know, for a fact, that they came from
themselves. I know, too, however, that such people are a minority. Most people
who “create” are actually DERIVING their works through imitation of others. So,
some are original, but most are not.
It is a toxic belief, however, that people
should think that originality does not exist. This prevents us from
appreciating the original souls among us. Their works would tend to be
dismissed as “plagiarized from sources unknown” – rather than actually created
by an original spirit. That is a very sad and corrupting way to look at the
world and work of creative people.
Luckily, it is fairly easy to recognize
genuine creatives. They are driven from within, by ideas that bubble up in
them; they have passion and drive – they speak in surprising ways and say
things one has never heard before. So, too, is it easy to recognize the
unoriginal derivers and imitators. They speak of their “influences”. They talk
of the ideas they got from reading/listening/meeting/seeing others. Always are
the ideas from without themselves...never do they appear within. They also tend
to dismiss the originality of others, seemingly assuming them to be as they
are: imitative. It doesn’t take long listening to and observing a “creative”
person, to decide which of these two types they are from: those who create original
works and those who echo, others.
The sad part about this is that true
creators are vastly outnumbered by the imitators and derivers. This gives the
incorrect impression to some, that to steal the thoughts of others, is the
common procedure of all “creators”. It is not so. Genuine creators create, from
their own thoughts and understandings of the world. However, those who talk
loudest of their creations and are often the most famous for them, are, too
often, of the thievish kind and simply echo the works of others, endlessly.
does exist. It just doesn’t exist in those who claim it doesn’t exist.
Posted by Valentine Cawley
(If you would like to support my continued writing of this blog and my ongoing campaign to raise awareness about giftedness and all issues pertaining to it, please donate, by clicking on the gold button to the left of the page.To read about my fundraising campaign, please go to: http://scientific-child-prodigy.blogspot.com/2011/01/fundraising-drive-in-support-of-my.html and here: http://scientific-child-prodigy.blogspot.com/2011/01/fundraising-drive-first-donation.htmlIf you would like to read any of our scientific research papers, there are links to some of them, here: http://scientific-child-prodigy.blogspot.com/2011/02/research-papers-by-valentine-cawley-and.htmlIf you would like to see an online summary of my academic achievements to date, please go here: http://www.getcited.org/mbrz/11136175To learn more of Ainan Celeste Cawley, 10, or his gifted brothers, Fintan, 7 and Tiarnan, 5, please go to: http://scientific-child-prodigy.blogspot.com/2006/10/scientific-child-prodigy-guide.htmlI also write of gifted education, child prodigy, child genius, adult genius, savant, megasavant, HELP University College, the Irish, the Malays, Singapore, Malaysia, IQ, intelligence and creativity.There is a review of my blog, on the respected The Kindle Report here:http://thekindlereport.blogspot.com/2010/09/boy-who-knew-too-much-child-prodigy.htmlPlease have a read, if you would like a critic's view of this blog. Thanks.You can get my blog on your Kindle, for easy reading, wherever you are, by going to: http://www.amazon.com/Boy-Who-Knew-Too-Much/dp/B0042P5LEE/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&m=AG56TWVU5XWC2&s=digital-text&qid=1284603792&sr=8-1Please let all your fellow Kindlers know about my blog availability - and if you know my blog well enough, please be so kind as to write a thoughtful review of what you like about it. Thanks.My Internet Movie Database listing is at:http://imdb.com/name/nm3438598/Ainan's IMDB listing is at http://imdb.com/name/nm3305973/Syahidah's IMDB listing is at http://imdb.com/name/nm3463926/Our editing, proofreading and copywriting company, Genghis Can, is athttp://www.genghiscan.com/This blog is copyright Valentine Cawley. Unauthorized duplication is prohibited. Use only with permission. Thank you.)
Labels: creativity, derivativeness, Genius, imitation, inspiration, lack of creativity, originality, the source of everything in the world, unoriginal