The Evolution of the Gifted Child
When I was young I read books and saw television shows based upon the lives of famous people. Even as a young child, I saw the paradoxes. One person makes a global success out of meager beginnings while another squanders a fortune in reputation as well as money. I wondered why. Is it fate or luck that determines success? Is it predestination or windfall that determines a well-lived life?
The cause had to be more than when and where you were born and to whom, because many times this just didnt seem to matter. In each case, the individual did matter. Think of da Vinci, Einstein, Curie, Churchill, Plato, Confucius, Lincoln, Lao Tsu. Who each of these people became depended upon who they were as individuals.
If who we are, what we are made of, determines our success in life, each of us must be in control of our destiny. The inquisitive among us wonders what about the opportunities missed or passed by, the roads not taken. To the degree we can respond to opportunity, can we expect to produce happiness, peace, and security? I wanted to know the answers. I was led to believe that school would provide me with what I needed to find them.
Public school gave me a great deal. It introduced me to many wonderful people, living and dead, who would serve as role models, ideals. At one point or another I wanted to be just about everything, a lawyer, an interviewer, an actress, a pilot, a playwright, an architect, an interpreter at the United Nations. By high school my interest in helping people was steering me toward psychology. Our school didnt have psych courses, so I talked with teachers. I read about it. I educated myself and found not enough financial security in psychology and too much medical study and upfront expense in psychiatry. I settled on journalism, partly because I would be able to learn the rest of my life and partly because my scholarship to the University of Missouri helped financially.
What I learned came from the experiences I had in school and college more than the book learning. So six months after graduating I found myself wondering what I was going to do with my life. I was so depressed with no goal, the breakup of an engagement, yet not wanting to return to my parents home I began thinking of how to get out, how to end it all. Id visited mental institutions as a college student and knew I didnt belong there. Therapy was a bit too expensive and I knew the basics there anyway. Religion was not an option because I had so many prejudices about it. So I fell into escaping through will busters for a while; alcohol, drugs, excessive sleep. I didnt want to face a hopeless life, so I ran from it.
Since then I have found a lot of other people follow this same pattern. Sooner or later you have to wonder, is this all there is? Like most middle class people I grew up believing that if I had a skill in life, a career, a niche, which are all products of schooling, then I could expect to find happiness and security the rest of my life. Id played by the rules. Where was my reward for being good? The distance between my thoughts and my physical reality was oppressive.
Running never set well with me however. I had too much self respect. Just like the Indigos.
One day I asked the right question, What causes my pain? The usual suspects flashed before my mental eye, some, like my parents, were miles away having no direct impact on my life; others, like the ex-fiance, werent even in my life anymore. I had to admit the answer was me.
Within a month of this life-changing, consciousness-raising realization I began studying mental law at the School of Metaphysics. Having been roused from the sleep of victimhood, I quickly realized this was the school I had been looking for all my life. Here I could learn the answers to the really important questions in my life and everyone elses. Who am I? Where did I come from? Why am I here? Where am I going? I wondered why I hadnt been taught how to find these answers earlier in life.
Less than a year into my study I learned something that helped me to understand.
In 1976, students and faculty of the School of Metaphysics were invested in educating the soul from birth. Many of us were parents or taught those who were raising children. The lessons we taught, the heart of the School, were then as they remain today for adults. We wanted to do something for the kids. Clean Up America (CUA) was our first answer.
The first year, CUA covered one state. It expanded to over a dozen in a few years. Clean Up Americas mission was two-fold in nature. First, we demonstrated personal responsibility by cleaning trash along state highways. Such citizen initiative was unheard of in those days. People, citizens, did not go out and pick up trash! Governments hired people to do this or used prison labor, so John Q. Citizen did not have to go out and pick up trash left by Paul Z. Citizen.
Many Americans had become elitists. We could throw our debris out our car windows anytime; afterall, we paid taxes so somebody else would do the cleaning. It was time for a change in consciousness, and those changes always begin with individuals.
We began with ourselves, our friends and families, our associates. We became examples of respect by respecting ourselves and our environments. The School of Metaphysics has a strong reputation of visionary leadership toward expansive consciousness, and elevating our collective sense of environmental responsibility with CUA is a good example.
Interestingly, we had the hardest time convincing some local and state governments to let us clean the highways. For instance in Iowa we had to lobby the state legislature in order to get permission to pick up litter on state roads. We were not allowed on the interstate highways there. You would think the government would positively respond to citizens volunteering to do the job since such efforts saved some states thousands of dollars.
The momentary challenges we faced then produced big returns, causing a wave of citizen initiative everywhere. Our experiences paved the way for the Adopt-a-Highway programs available throughout the United States today.
It was the secondary purpose of Clean Up America that opened our eyes to the connection between the education the School of Metaphysics offers and the talented and gifted child. Knowing the value of the understandings each individual possesses, we wanted to support the talented and gifted, so we decided to give one hundred percent of the money collected for the project to schools for talented and gifted children. It seemed like such an easy and joyful task! What we encountered was mind opening.
In a nation that affords all of its youth a basic education, you would believe we would also respond to the accelerated needs of the future leaders, inventors, visionaries, and explorers. We learned that in the United States of the 1970s much attention was being drawn to the handicapped or disabled child with almost none toward the meeting the needs of the exceptional child. In fact, exceptional child often referred to the underprivileged. We felt very strongly that the talented and gifted children were natural leaders, children whose innate faculty for learning, reasoning, organizing, and initiating made them outstanding. Fellow students, and teachers, often did not understand their needs. Peers saw them as bossy or different or loners. Teachers expected them to take care of themselves, and often other students as well.
The first year of the project it was difficult to find a school solely devoted to the gifted. Schools for quick learners were rare and programs often consisted of only one hour a week of studies different from the regular curriculum. Even in subsequent years, the funds were given to programs in existing schools or specialized programs statewide. We were not discouraged, we knew the work we were doing would make a difference in so many lives the children, their parents, and ultimately all of us because these children would grow to become the leaders of tomorrow.
This is now true with the mystic children of today, the Indigos.
As the years of Clean Up America continued, awareness of the needs of the talented and gifted grew for us and for many others. Through contacts with teachers and parents we learned amazing lessons which we then passed on through lectures and radio-tv-newspaper interviews. I learned a great deal about myself, my upbringing, the root of my successes and failures in school, by interacting with the talented and gifted teachers and schools. In many cases the attributes of the gifted child are mirrored in what is now called the Indigo child. Compare the following:
|Intellectual traits |
Gifted child: Possesses keen observation abilities with an excellent memory. Their great curiosity fuels interest in a variety of subjects and they often possess skills beyond their years. Enjoys intellectual challenges, organizes thoughts well, displays good judgment.
Indigo child: Possesses keen observation abilities with an excellent memory. Desire to know is a requirement. Creative, unifies elements in what appears diverse, uses power of mental visualization. Organizes and catalogues information with great speed, makes connections mentally. Natural philosophers.
|Academic Skills |
Gifted: Excellent command of language speaking fluently with a wide vocabulary. Enjoys writing stories, poems, plays. Learns quickly, therefore, progresses rapidly. Knows and understands scientific information beyond physical age, keeps up with world issues. Can use advanced mathematic process and excels in problem solving.
Indigo: Draws connections quickly between subject areas. Technologically adept. Multi-media, multi-dimensional learning and application. Learning is based upon cause and effect relationships. Old educational model is left behind. Has preferred ways of learning, integrates broad range of information in innovative, creative ways. Use oriented, if there is a way to do it, they want to experience it, not talk about it.
Gifted: Persistence in exploring ideas, wants to know everything. Many interests and aptitudes, including art, music, dance, drama, graphic arts. High standard of achievement, perfectionist. Enjoys searching for information relating to interests. Keeps records, journals, diaries. Well organized collection of various things: stamps, coins, rocks, shells, insects.
Indigo: Everything. Already knows and has big ideas. Very interested in your thought processes, the whys. They probe others experience to help them understand their own. Must be interested for something to hold their attention, when it does they are voracious. Inexhaustible energy when engaged.
|Social/Individual Characteristics |
Gifted: Independent, individualist, self-sufficient, stubborn. Bored by routine. Good sense of humor. Easily occupies own time without stimulation from others. Likes to be with and converse with adults and older children. Impatient with no challenge. Considered different by other children. Generally thoughtful, assuming leadership easily. Good sense of justice, dependable and responsible. Developing thinking.
Indigo: High self esteem, strong integrity, honest, direct, highly sensitive. Has a sense of mission and exhibits it early. Will not be dissuaded once head/heart is set. Demands choices and right to make them. Excessive energy leads to quick shifts in attention. Bores easily. Needs emotionally stable adults, constant loving. Innate healing abilities. Drawn to group thought when need arises, will not be isolated. Developing being.
The relativity of the Gifted child to the Indigo when cast in this light speaks to an evolution of thought and consciousness in human beings. Could the brilliance of the Gifted exist to offer guidance to the Indigo? To serve as a bridge for evolutionary progression? I believe this to be true.
A disturbing truth related to this came to light during our search for the talented and gifted in l970s America. There were teachers for the Gifted, but you had to dig to find them. I could dismiss the absence in the small midwestern town where I had been schooled, but programs were equally hard to come by in metropolitan areas like Chicago and Tulsa and Kansas City. It became alarmingly clear that few people knew enough about how to learn to adequately teach these young minds. Left unrecognized and unstimulated, these children fell into daydreaming in an effort to escape boredom or into laziness because their half-hearted effort often set the class grade so why put out any more effort than needed? Or they became elitists, because they knew they were gifted even if others did not. Most gifted kids were growing up settling for a lot less and, as a result, their talents were being wasted.
In those early days, having my own children was not in my mind; helping those who did was. As I learned about the gifted child, I realized I was one. I had grown up. And I was still looking for a way to learn how to understand and use the gifts I had. Mental disciplines like concentration, meditation, and visualization learned at SOM gave me a scientific way to develop my abilities and measure them over time. The thought often crossed my mind, I wonder who I would be, what I would be doing now if I had been taught these skills earlier in life? That question which will never find an answer in me became a motivating mantra for me to teach the parents of the children who can.
Learning about others lives, genius, contributions is available in schools around the United States, and in much of the world. This is valuable. It can be a profound stimulus for those with supernormal abilities who already have the imagination to invent a better mousetrap or the discipline to research a cure for a disease or the memory to deliver stirring speeches in a dozen languages. What about the rest of us? Is it possible to understand the workings of those creative minds? Can we be taught how to think like Leonardo da Vinci or William Shakespeare or Mohandas K. Gandhi or Marie Curie?
How does one become a mental gymnast, fluid in thought and expression? Can intelligence be developed? Can intuition be taught? Is mystical experience everyones future?
An urgent need to know these answers is present in the minds of increasing numbers of people. People are waking up, realizing that maturity, wisdom, and self mastery are worthy goals in life. They are redefining life experience beyond the cars they drive, the money they make, and the people they know. In greater numbers they are viewing life as a spiritual journey for Self mastery.
This is where your willingness to excel begins. Indigo energy brings an incredible opportunity for reuniting the soul. With guidance from those who are already doing so they can excel. The energies are present for all of us to use. How we interpret our experiences, like the 9/11/01 tragedy in New York City, dictates individual progression. The degree to which we accelerate our own growth in awareness is the degree to which we can expect global change.
We may doubt our individual importance. Indigos never do. They have an inner link that connects them with the whole. They have a strong inner sense that goes beyond the fears that may have held you and me back. And, free of mind control drugs, they will continue to embrace experience completely, moving beyond the polarizing world of light/dark, good/bad, right/wrong inherent in those who think with the brain instead of the mind.
The School of Metaphysics teaches the structure of the mind which makes understanding polarity easier. The ability for the mind to separate, identify, and admit its place in the scheme of creation can be taught and it can be learned. This produces respect for self and others. Attention, the sense of the mind, can be unified. Like a light focused into a laser, undivided attention enables us to completely absorb and give, mentally and emotionally, for greatest learning. Concentration can be taught as an art and as a science through the daily development of the individual will.
Memory, listening, imagination, breathing, reasoning, and intuition round out the essential life skills that every school can and should be teaching. For the parent, these are essential tools for raising an Indigo child. As we know how to raise the consciousness of ourselves, we know what guidance to offer the Indigo soul.
Living with people who understand the basic essential living skills and who practice them daily establishes thought patterns in a childs growing mind. Seven-year-old Hezekiahs length of meditation lasts three minutes. Thats more than the fifteen-second, close my eyes and breathe deeply, of two years ago. Progress is easy to see with children.
Ki is around many adults who meditate daily, who perform life force exercises, and project healing energies to those in need. I am so grateful for this because I know what happens in the first seven years of our lives lays the foundation, the pattern, for an entire lifetime. These patterns are repeated throughout the life over and over; the strengths as well as the weaknesses. The strengths shine through the gifts and talents that come so naturally and are given so freely. The weaknesses highlight areas where the true lessons of a lifetime, the learning for the soul, are recognized.
Applying metaphysical principles and practices in your own life prepares you for parenting. I now know it from direct experience as well as observation. When you know what causes the mind to function, you can teach this to a child. When you understand the basics of disciplining the mind, you can teach these to a child. Concentration, remembering, listening, imagining, reasoning and intuitive skills are basic essential living skills. Your demonstration of these abilities gives your child an example of living ideals. Teaching them the skills gives them the best start in life because it sustains connection with the Soul, and this is the single most important factor in bringing balance and success into your life.
Self respect, the first essential life skill, brings personal responsibility, integrity, wisdom, and a love for Truth. Imagine what you might be able to accomplish throughout an entire lifetime when spiritual principles are learned and practiced from a very young age! Imagine what kind of world we will create.
Purchase This Book
©2002 School of Metaphysics