The main aim of the book is to widen the understanding of concepts of intelligence, creativity and giftedness through Indian perspective, as well as presenting an overview of various efforts for identifying and nurturing talents. This book tries to present unique, complete picture of a true integrated nature of these concepts as well as their development.
The book covers a large canvas right from ancient Indian Vedic literature and sciences, literature by saints to modern western theories related to these concepts. Overview of history of changing concepts of intelligence, creativity and giftedness in the West and the way these are coming closer to ancient Indian view is presented. A unique original theory of giftedness is also proposed in this line. This theory has its origins in evolutionary biology and marks confluence of eastern and western approaches. It conceptualized giftedness as potential for advance development. Behavioural indicators of this development are also mentioned to make the understanding easier and clearer.
The overall approach of this book is wide, holistic and developmental. According to ancient Indian approach, intelligence, giftedness and creativity encompass broader meaning to include cognitive, social, emotional, moral, ethical and spiritual dimensions. And also, constructive contribution to the society is assumed in these concepts. The concepts put forth in this book are universally applicable, beyond boundaries of any country or culture as these are considered axiomatic principles of life.
An elaborate case study of an Institute is presented to make application of this approach more clear. The kind of backup that is needed to systematically nurture giftedness is evident from the expanse of activities, knowledge and research that Institute has raised. The output of this educational system with holistic approach is presented in the form of collective contributions to the society from the alumni of this Institute. With this background, an overview of present status related to assessment, identification and nurturance of abilities in our country is presented. Some initiatives by government and non-governmental agencies, critical reviews of some renowned institutes claiming the nurturance of giftedness are also given to make our stand clearer. This indicates increasing awareness regarding talents in society as well as at governmental level.
Many challenges in identifying and nurturing talents are discussed. The book emphasizes that these three concepts, viz., intelligence, creativity and giftedness have to be understood beyond quantitative measurement and thus psychometric methods making justice to validity of assessing multiple abilities, wisdom, creativity and giftedness involving intuitive thinking and subjective experience are to be evolved. The need for making social, political and cultural environments congenial for this is emphasized. And for that, interdisciplinary research is recommended. At the same time, need to increase parental sensitivity, awareness, acceptance of abilities of their children and their readiness to take efforts for their enhancement has to be attended.
In short, this book tries to present broad, holistic, comprehensive concepts of intelligence, giftedness and creativity from Indian perspective along with their application.
2. Ancient Indian View of "Buddhi"
3. Buddhi and Giftedness as Conceptualised by Saint Samarth Ramdas
4. Creativity and Evolutionary View of Giftedness
5. Giftedness as a Potential for Advance Development
6. Cleaning the Mess: Current Scenario
7. Where Do We Stand?
8. Special Educational Institutes
9. Jnana Prabodhini as a Step in Gifted Education
10. Beyond Schooling and Formal Education