I know there are a couple of threads on this already but I had some insights I wanted to be seen. Rather than thinking "gift", maybe "predisposition" ? Thinking deeper, maybe this has to do with the degree of reward e get when we attempt a task for the first time. This reward can be exrinsic, in the form of success and praise, it can be negative in the form of failure and shame, or it can be intrinsic in teh form of endorphin release. Reward pathways and sensitivity to mood altering neurotransmitters/neuromodulators have been shown to be significant in the establishment and maintenence of many behavioural patterns. So, if we take a child who is a blank canvas ( assuming that for the moment) and expose them to sensory stimuli ( eg music), some will respond to that with interest, some with disinterest. Let's say there is a piano in the room. One child may make the connecion between the music they are hearing on the radio, one might not. Possibly a trial behaviour occurs, whereby a child attempts to reproduce the melody they are hearing on the piano. This behaviour may be reinforced by success, which can be heard by the child, or by praise from a parent. It may be extinguished by failure or by rebuke. The trial of behaviour may be thwarted by another child having possession first, no access, parental denial of access etc. Success may be futher follwed by formal training. Failure may be followed by a label of "no musical talent" therefore no formal training to back it up. Time goes by, one child is seen as "gifted", one is not. There are many possible variations on this scenario, but you get the general idea. Most importantly, there is no doubt that we all take to one task or another more readily than another. While myself, Ken, Ed, Steve VAi and others all swear they have no talent and it's all hard work, there is no doubt that results from hard work seem to come more easily to some than to others. It is really just why this is so that we are discussing. I'm going on holiday for two weeks now, and rudely won't really be checking in on this thread, but I hope for some more insights from you all.