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Do Atheists Have Higher Iq's Than Religious Folk In The Western World Today

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posted on Jan, 1 2011 @ 05:02 AM
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reply to post by sinohptik
 


159 is pretty high, i think above 140 comes under genius(einstein's was apparently 160) , plus some iq tests are only 30 questions long so it is relatively easy to do ace as long as you are very good at math and spacial awareness, luckily (for my sake)spelling and grammer normally doesnt come into it




posted on Jan, 1 2011 @ 06:25 AM
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Happy New Year.


Hi everyone, i was thinking that it is not the most logical thing to believe in a god or gods when when we have so much science that disproves large parts of it.

Science offers no proof about the existence of gods, one way or the other.

Logic furnishes no more guidance than science. The occasional incoherent claim that is revealed (God can create a rock too heavy for him to lift) is easily repaired, with no discernible effect on anybody's beliefs, one way or the other.


I would also like to ask if people could not use religious geniuses form the past as i am only talking about people who are alive today and please do not include someone who is simply good at playing the piano or a good dancer as i am looking for answers based on iq.

Intelligence Quotient is a summary descriptive statistic for what seems to be several specific cognitive capacities. Since the claim is that IQ measures "general intelligence," distinct from learning or specialized skills, then the existence of geniuses from the past would be immediately relevant to whether "general intelligence" has anything to do with belief.

OK, you meant to ask whether living atheists as a group have a different distribution of measured IQ than the tested residents of the First World generally. How would you propose to measure that, in order to answer your question?

Well, let's begin at the beginning. What's an atheist?

If you hang out here at ATS, then you can see there is a tremendous variety in the freely chosen self-descriptions among people who aren't religiously devout.

Suppose your "atheist" category included everybody who used that particle in their self-description, even if the label as a whole is self-contradictory (and so therefore has no meaning based on the "sum of its parts") Popular combinations include such things as atheist agnostic, which apparently is not to be confused with agnostic atheist or atheist-agnostic (with a hyphen).

What would you make of a positive correlation between any use of the particle in a self-description and score on an IQ test?

You have an obvious confounder. High-status intellectuals (Bertrand Russell, Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, ...) choose to call themselves atheist. Lower-status intellectuals would predictably follow suit. Since IQ scores are used as a barrier to entry in knowledge occupations, atheists would skew high on social imitation grounds alone.

So, you would at best demonstrate that choosing to include the a-word in your self-description, even if the description goes on to fudge actually being an atheist, correlates with measured general intelligence. That dexterity at word-lawyering is one of the things that many IQ tests reward amplifies the confound.

In the meantime, the geniuses of the past thing is strongly suggestive that intelligence and religious belief are not inherently contradictory. More important than that, I think, is that there really isn't much evidence for big changes in cognitive capacity over the past 30,000 years or so, but ample evidence for tremendous elaboration of theistic religious thought over the same time period.

One of the things we do know that changes crisply is fashion. High-status individuals at one time made a show of religious devotion, not so much anymore, and in some fields, 180-degrees opposite. Dawkins, for example, obviously can't shut up about how smart he is to deny God. Galileo, on the other hand, was equally forthcoming about his smarts to affirm the same God.

"Monkey see, monkey do" is an adaptive strategy if whom the monkey sees is a higher-status member of the troop. And what kind of monkey will be best at "Monkey see big shot doing, monkey do likewise?"

Well, that would be the most intelligent monkeys, wouldn't it?



posted on Jan, 1 2011 @ 10:08 AM
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Originally posted by Kailassa
reply to post by Annee
 

Annee, some people are born with silver spoons in their mouths, some, such as yourself, are born wearing joggers and backpacks. Life has been quite a journey, one way or the other.



LOL - - the only time I got good grades was when we had to do something of independent thought. One time in 5th grade we had to write a report - on conservation of the neighborhood - - from a personal viewpoint. Mine was used as an example of "thinking for yourself" and read to the whole class. However - the teacher did not believe I wrote it because I was getting Ds in the class. I had to bring a signed note from my mother stating I wrote it myself.

School does not want you to think - they want you to follow. Society does not want you to think - they want you to follow. Religion does not want you to think - they want you to follow.

I can cruise through as needed - - but I am not "owned".



posted on Jan, 1 2011 @ 10:27 AM
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Originally posted by lewman
reply to post by sinohptik
 


159 is pretty high, i think above 140 comes under genius(Einstein's was apparently 160) , plus some IQ tests are only 30 questions long so it is relatively easy to do ace as long as you are very good at math and spacial awareness, luckily (for my sake)spelling and grammar normally doesn't come into it


True. The testing varies and results are questionable.

My brother tested at 150 - - but he was reading the newspaper at 4 years old. In first grade they asked him to spell "there" and he asked "Which one?". He was rejected by 2 private schools because he would have required individual attention. Its a shame - - instead he was allowed to flounder in the system of public school with negative results.

IQ really doesn't mean anything - - - unless it is (can be) applied.

I think a Critical Thinker (such as an Atheist) - - applies their IQ differently - - and develops that area of the brain - - - rather then just stating they are born with it.



posted on Jan, 1 2011 @ 02:59 PM
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reply to post by lewman
 


Yeah, i looked into it a little bit. I found it all very interesting, but applying a number to it just really doesnt matter to me personally. I actually went and looked at the paperwork and i was wrong about what i received, it was a bit higher (162), but still just a number placed to what was already there, and will remain there after the number is applied. Apparently, there can be great deviations due to things such as being tired, sick, or even stressed over the test. When i took this specific test, i was actually quite ill, so the results are probably skewed somehow. edit: I was not able to find average length on the test i took, but i remember it taking me about two hours. my result was also labelled as FSIQ.

It seems, i took the "Stanford-Binet" test, fifth edition. Under the Cattell test, there is a average deviation, which would place me at roughly 193. Under the Weschler test, i would be placed at 158. This is all according to this site which seems to accurately correlate with other sources i have been reading, but doesnt provide much information beyond the cross-references. Some are of the belief that IQ is not as relevant as E-IQ. But i label them as hippies
(kidding) Its actually very interesting to see how science tries to quantify such things. The results are less meaningful to me than the tests themselves. As i think we all know, someone may be "smart" but boy, they sure can be dumb!
Im now of the thinking that it just shows strength in certain tested areas, and even then seems to have great inaccuracies and deviations.
edit on 1-1-2011 by sinohptik because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 1 2011 @ 03:04 PM
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reply to post by Kailassa
 


Interesting, in the reading i have been doing, such a thing doesnt happen in the generally accepted IQ test (mainly the stanford-binet and cattell). I wonder what other test they had at that time. About what era was it?



posted on Jan, 1 2011 @ 03:29 PM
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reply to post by eight bits
 


You actually make a decent point, though it seems to be missing certain critical pieces of information. Primarily, the lack of relatively broad acceptance of atheism for 1950 out of the last 2010 years. Sure, there was a particular level of acceptance in antebellum America (an a bit earlier, in what is sometimes referred to as the 'golden age' of freethought), but there was a fairly long period of time where atheism, particularly public atheism, was a good way to get either communally shunned or...killed.

Take your example, Galileo. He accepted God, rejected geocentrism, and we all have a general idea of how that followed (though some people think it's a lot worse than it actually was). Had he rejected God...what would have happened to him? Kind of obvious back then.

There's also the other thing, God of the gaps. Many intellectual theists, particularly in times such as Galileo's, had to hold theism as the only tenable position due to the vast lack of understanding of nature. Sure, there were periods of time where people were publicly atheist without getting killed, like Ancient Greece (though that was technically the crime for which Socrates was killed, even though it was most likely [if he even existed] an issue of rabble-rousing). We have thousands of years where declaring atheism was a very brave act, so how can historical examples count for anything?

And this is a discussion of trends, not individuals. Not all atheists are going to be smarter than all theists and not all theists are going to be smarter than all atheists, it's about averages. We're not saying that all geniuses are going to be atheists, nor are we saying that theists are precluded from having high IQs.

Then there's the unsupported claim about rank and file academics and intellectuals following suit with atheism for..well, whatever reasons. Specifically here:



You have an obvious confounder. High-status intellectuals (Bertrand Russell, Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, ...) choose to call themselves atheist.


And high-status intellectuals (Robert T Bakker, Ken Miller, Francis Collins) also choose to call themselves theists. Sure, their popular status isn't as big, but their professional status is. Robert T Bakker is a legend of paleontology, Ken Miller is a public champion of biology, and Francis Collins heads up the Human Genome Project.



Lower-status intellectuals would predictably follow suit.


So where's the evidence of this?



Since IQ scores are used as a barrier to entry in knowledge occupations, atheists would skew high on social imitation grounds alone.


I'm sorry, but which occupations are those? I mean, my father is a physicist and he's held a few occupations that could be considered 'knowledge occupations', though I'm not 100% sure on what you mean by that...and he never, ever, ever ever ever had to take an IQ test. In fact, he has never taken an IQ test.

As for your point on self-description, I'd say your self-description as 'agnostic' is as invalid or more so than certain self-described atheists. No offense, but you seem to have a misunderstanding of what an atheist is in the first place, so I'd stop addressing the description of atheists as a point.

Of course, the thrust of your point is that historical accounts of really smart theists means that theists are equally intelligent. Well, that's already incorrect and I've addressed that.

Simple fact is, we know atheists score higher on IQ tests, we don't know exactly what factors play into that. It might be partially socioeconomic, as societal health and societal religiosity have a negative correlation. There are too many factors to consider and they're going to have to spend more time researching.
edit on 1/1/11 by madnessinmysoul because: Left something out and fixed quote error, addition found in italics.



posted on Jan, 1 2011 @ 04:16 PM
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Originally posted by sinohptik
reply to post by Kailassa
 


Interesting, in the reading i have been doing, such a thing doesnt happen in the generally accepted IQ test (mainly the stanford-binet and cattell). I wonder what other test they had at that time. About what era was it?


This was the I.Q. test used by the Victorian Department of Education in 1964.



posted on Jan, 1 2011 @ 05:21 PM
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madness


Take your example, Galileo. He accepted God, rejected geocentrism, and we all have a general idea of how that followed (though some people think it's a lot worse than it actually was). Had he rejected God...what would have happened to him? Kind of obvious back then.

But Galileo didn't reject God. On the contrary, he was a cradle Catholic, and remained so throughout his life. So, we don't know what would have happened if he had felt otherwise, and no, it isn't at all obvious. Catholic creed-cops aren't psychic. If Galileo didn't parade his religious opinions, then who would know what they were?

And since Galileo's actual, devout religious writings did him little good, it is hard to see how their absence would have done him much harm.


There's also the other thing, God of the gaps. Many intellectual theists, particularly in times such as Galileo's, had to hold theism as the only tenable position due to the vast lack of understanding of nature...

Uh, huh. We disagree whether religion explains anything temporal, and so whether many people look to religion for something that it simply may not provide. There seems little point in reviving our disagreement here. It is off-topic, and would be derailing to pursue.


We have thousands of years where declaring atheism was a very brave act, so how can historical examples count for anything?

Portraying a sitting Pope as jackass was a very brave act, too. Galileo did it. Surely that historical example counts for something.


And this is a discussion of trends, not individuals. Not all atheists are going to be smarter than all theists and not all theists are going to be smarter than all atheists, ...

We are in agreement, then.


OK, you meant to ask whether living atheists as a group have a different distribution of measured IQ than the tested residents of the First World generally.



Then there's the unsupported claim about rank and file academics and intellectuals following ...

I didn't make any claim, I pointed out the irrebuttable fact that social imitation is a confounder. That means that social imitation is a possibility which would need to be eliminated or controlled in a competent experimental design which attempted to establish a difference in "general intelligence" between atheists and some larger population which included them.


And high-status intellectuals (Robert T Bakker, Ken Miller, Francis Collins) also choose to call themselves theists. Sure, their popular status isn't as big, but their professional status is. Robert T Bakker is a legend of paleontology, Ken Miller is a public champion of biology, and Francis Collins heads up the Human Genome Project.

So what? I said social imitation was a confounder.

If you want to deal with a confounder, then you measure it and control for it. You don't trot out just-so stories about how not every high-status individual is an atheist. Nobody said that everyone of high-status is an atheist.

-
edit on 1-1-2011 by eight bits because: so that the words expressed the thoughts.



posted on Jan, 1 2011 @ 06:09 PM
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reply to post by eight bits
 



Originally posted by eight bits
But Galileo didn't reject God. On the contrary, he was a cradle Catholic, and remained so throughout his life. So, we don't know what would have happened if he had felt otherwise, and no, it isn't at all obvious. Catholic creed-cops aren't psychic. If Galileo didn't parade his religious opinions, then who would know what they were?


Yes, but we're unsure if that would have been the case today. He was definitely more willing to challenge the religious establishment than most. I'm not going to doubt that he was devout, but I will doubt that it means anything.



And since Galileo's actual, devout religious writings did him little good, it is hard to see how their absence would have done him much harm.


What about the documented cases of execution of anyone who was considered an atheist by the Catholic church? Does that count?




There's also the other thing, God of the gaps. Many intellectual theists, particularly in times such as Galileo's, had to hold theism as the only tenable position due to the vast lack of understanding of nature...

Uh, huh. We disagree whether religion explains anything temporal, and so whether many people look to religion for something that it simply may not provide. There seems little point in reviving our disagreement here. It is off-topic, and would be derailing to pursue.


I'm not going to argue on the issue, but back then it was definitely in the zeitgeist that people considered religion as something that explained things of a temporal nature.




We have thousands of years where declaring atheism was a very brave act, so how can historical examples count for anything?

Portraying a sitting Pope as jackass was a very brave act, too. Galileo did it. Surely that historical example counts for something.


I never said it didn't, nor did I say that Galileo was anything less than brave or brilliant. However, historical examples don't amount of a hill of beans on this issue, as social and economic factors seem to be indicators of a population's religiosity or lack thereof.




And this is a discussion of trends, not individuals. Not all atheists are going to be smarter than all theists and not all theists are going to be smarter than all atheists, ...

We are in agreement, then.


It seems so.



OK, you meant to ask whether living atheists as a group have a different distribution of measured IQ than the tested residents of the First World generally.


And the lesson today kids is that departing from an established style that makes sure you address everything is not always a good idea. My bad.




Then there's the unsupported claim about rank and file academics and intellectuals following ...

I didn't make any claim, I pointed out the irrebuttable fact that social imitation is a confounder.


But provided no evidence of social imitation in this instance. It's not irrebuttable here unless you demonstrate it.



That means that social imitation is a possibility which would need to be eliminated or controlled in a competent experimental design which attempted to establish a difference in "general intelligence" between atheists and some larger population which included them.


That's true, hence my call for further study earlier in this thread.




And high-status intellectuals (Robert T Bakker, Ken Miller, Francis Collins) also choose to call themselves theists. Sure, their popular status isn't as big, but their professional status is. Robert T Bakker is a legend of paleontology, Ken Miller is a public champion of biology, and Francis Collins heads up the Human Genome Project.

So what? I said social imitation was a confounder.


So would the imitation of these individuals confound studies equally?



If you want to deal with a confounder, then you measure it and control for it. You don't trot out just-so stories about how not every high-status individual is an atheist. Nobody said that everyone of high-status is an atheist.


Ok, I guess I misread your post.

So it seems that we're in agreement that further study and refinement of methods is required.



posted on Jan, 1 2011 @ 06:46 PM
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reply to post by Kailassa
 


I see, canadian eh? question answered then!
(just to clarify, this is a joke)

Im going to look into it. I find myself interested in the tests themselves because its quite an interesting concept to put a number to something nebulous like "intelligence." It completely follows typical human nature and behavior to do that, but i find it rather nonsensical at best. It intrigues me to no end, apparently


madness:

my hypothesis is that current IQ tests measure analytical ability more than anything else. This would correlate quite well with the core nature of the "atheist." It doesnt really speak to how "smart" anyone involved is, in any way shape or form. But both a high IQ, and an atheist, are analogous to the individual analyzing every aspect of a topic. In such situations, things like "faith" can not be analyzed and would likely be disregarded entirely. Same with God, or anything of that nature. The parts of those topics that can be analyzed would be present in everyday life. Things such as witnessing organized religion, and the corruption involved, the general individual who claims such things to be true, preaching in general, etc. This would generally lead to a negative position on the topic of religion, and the analytical mind would likely correlate that which they teach, preach, and believe into the same general arena. I would say that is probably the first step to atheism, for most involved. It makes sense to me, what do you think?



posted on Jan, 1 2011 @ 07:17 PM
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Originally posted by sinohptik
my hypothesis is that current IQ tests measure analytical ability more than anything else. This would correlate quite well with the core nature of the "atheist."


...but not all atheists are analytical and theres no "core nature" thats applicable to all atheists...



posted on Jan, 1 2011 @ 07:20 PM
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Re Sinophtic

You wrote:

["However, i dont believe that even in the most limited definitions of God, the human mind or its logic are even moderately capable of using reasoning on such a "being." At least at a level relevant enough to be taken seriously. That would apply to both the "for" and "against" side of things, in my perspective."]

There's a reason for the common asian distinction between the various 'ways' (based on individual character or talents). And none of them are esoterically considered to be THE way (exoterically there's ofcourse a lot of 'my way is best'), and thus none of them are entitled to be authorities for definite conclusions on ultimate reality (if such exists).

Whatever awaits us beyond-event-horizon can only be fully met through direct experience (requiring a consciousness shift) or tentatively described by the purity of mathematics or the 'weird' language tao'ists or zen-buddhists use sometimes.

So in a couple of contexts:

The wise person (knowing wisdom isn't just an extension if the intellect) uses his/her wisdom to direct the intellect to worthwhile activities. I've known some really intelligent christian fundies, but from both wisdom and a good intellect these people stayed rather passive on the recruiting scene (evangelism). They knew from the attitude of acceptance in wisdom and from intellectual analysis, that trying to create those horrible christian-doctrine-faith/science-logic hybrids is wasted time. Sad to say, and without doubt provocative, my impression of evangelists trying to go the science-logic hijacking way (intelligent design, Pascal's wager, science-as-a-swiss-cheese just waiting to have the holes filled out or just plain rhetoric disguised as housebroken semantics) is, that they are rather dumb, and usually end with being rather insulting about opposition, the basis of which they know practically nothing about.

Another more mundane consideration could be, that intelligent parents often have better income, and in especially right-wing capitalism can afford better education for their children. And as has been suggested in a former post here, education is probably a determing factor in choice of religion or no religion at all.

I live in a liberal country, where even higher education is practically free (or strongly subsidized), and a considerable amount of my well-educated friends are leaning towards active buddhism, as buddhism is one of the semi-religions 'fitting' best with scientific cosmogony and cosmology, and at the same time being rather free of theistic doctrines.



posted on Jan, 1 2011 @ 07:29 PM
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reply to post by Wyn Hawks
 


Except, of course, for the fact they are atheists.


There are exceptions to every "rule," anyway. I still think it is a completely viable generalized theory.

Id like to hear more thoughts from you on it though. Please go into detail, if you would be so kind



posted on Jan, 1 2011 @ 07:48 PM
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reply to post by bogomil
 


Im not so sure of the relevance of the first half of your post. I am sure it is, i just cant see it. Could you clarify?

To clarify my own position, i do not view an IQ score as a outright level of intelligence. I feel it tests the analytical ability of an individual, and not much beyond that. But, i am just now educating myself on the tests themselves, so its still a limited understanding. I personally think they are quite a few different forms of "intelligence" and if one has a great leaning and skill towards one, then they will likely be lacking in other areas of "intelligence." Come to think of it, it might be interesting to try to list those different types. I might just do that, thanks for the inspiration


I am not so sure about education playing the vital role in atheism, but i would definitely say it plays a part. I also do not correlate education, or "learned knowledge" with the analytical ability that i feel is tested for in the standardized IQ test. People with self-claimed high IQs might even be more pre-disposed to do worse in the standard educational system. Educational success, and length, is mainly indicative of information retention, memory, and determination. Some things i view as a different forms of "intelligence." If you mean to propose that an educated individual is more likely to be an atheist, im not sure i agree. I do think there is a distinct possibility of indoctrination in higher education, in which case, you may be entirely correct. But, i feel it is much more likely that the drive to receive that higher education is also the drive behind a belief system such as atheism.
edit on 1-1-2011 by sinohptik because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 2 2011 @ 03:00 PM
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Re Sinohptic

You wrote:

["Im not so sure of the relevance of the first half of your post. I am sure it is, i just cant see it. Could you clarify?"]

I must admit, that it was somewhat cryptic, skipping some steps etc. The idea is, that none of the commonly known characteristics defining a human being is THE access to whatever beyond-event-horizon is. Neither is any of such characteristics on its own able to support any advanced abstractions as e.g. a complex ideology (whereas simplistic doctrinal systems can be related to in black/white attitudes of low-intellectual considerations or random/moody emotional reactions).

So neither intellect nor any other human attribute is identical with 'higher' expressions/experiences of existence.

Hope this clarifies, but both for the last and this present post: My bad for being unclear.

Quote: ["I personally think they are quite a few different forms of "intelligence" and if one has a great leaning and skill towards one"]

Once, at the dawn of time, I studied psychology at university, and in spite of everything being unbearably behaviouristic, there was already then talk of 'emotional intelligence' (maybe a badly chosen formulation). Personally I've passed a general ability-test (amongst other things evaluating the abilty to correlate spatial technology with mathematics/logic) and I came out amongst the top 5 promille. On the other hand I'm close to imbecile, when it comes to computer navigation; guess most ten year olds could do it better than me.

So I agree, and in a wider context it's a guideline for me, as no special talents/abilities (and consequently reality-tunnels) have excellence in a common co-existence.

Quote: [" If you mean to propose that an educated individual is more likely to be an atheist, im not sure i agree. I do think there is a distinct possibility of indoctrination in higher education, in which case, you may be entirely correct."]

I agree with you on the element of indoctrination leading to polarized attitudes, either for or against the indoctrination; but if education is done on principles of liberalism and with the aim of 'learning to learn' religion will scrutinized before accepted, not passively accepted.

This does not exclude the possibility, that well-educated persons can choose religion after a scrutiny, but it will reduce the religious populace as compared to that of passive acceptance. Northern Europe where I live is an example. Black/white doctrinal religions are down to 5% active participation amongst the indigenous population, which has benefitted from our general educational system. Second-generation immigrants show a similar tendency (though slower because of a certain degree of non-integration in mainstream).

But it's not a moot-point with me.

Quote: ["But, i feel it is much more likely that the drive to receive that higher education is also the drive behind a belief system such as atheism."]

I make the guess, that you're a US citizen, and possibly with little firsthand contacts with europeans. If I'm correct in this, some of the cultural differences between americans and europeans would surprise you concerning the 'values' of life. Some of the attractive aims in US can be considered insignificant, even 'vulgar', in Europe, and the 'measuretapes' varies correspondingly. Sorry, maybe cryptic again. It means, that social darwinism is more pronounced in US, so US individuals are measured according to their social status more than to individual character and 'drives' become an important part of sociopsychological imprinting.

Thus I wouldn't be especially interested in the job, education, intelligence or religion of a stranger (this is a rather sweeping generalization, but does represent a kind of statistical average).
.



posted on Jan, 2 2011 @ 03:43 PM
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Originally posted by bogomil

I must admit, that it was somewhat cryptic, skipping some steps etc. The idea is, that none of the commonly known characteristics defining a human being is THE access to whatever beyond-event-horizon is. Neither is any of such characteristics on its own able to support any advanced abstractions as e.g. a complex ideology (whereas simplistic doctrinal systems can be related to in black/white attitudes of low-intellectual considerations or random/moody emotional reactions).

So neither intellect nor any other human attribute is identical with 'higher' expressions/experiences of existence.

Hope this clarifies, but both for the last and this present post: My bad for being unclear.


I understood what you said, but i was having trouble finding the relevance to this thread
Do take note of the initial sentence of "Even in the limited definitions of god" or something to that effect. Honestly, i suspect there is a language barrier happening, so we can just move on


I agree with you on the element of indoctrination leading to polarized attitudes, either for or against the indoctrination; but if education is done on principles of liberalism and with the aim of 'learning to learn' religion will scrutinized before accepted, not passively accepted.

This does not exclude the possibility, that well-educated persons can choose religion after a scrutiny, but it will reduce the religious populace as compared to that of passive acceptance. Northern Europe where I live is an example. Black/white doctrinal religions are down to 5% active participation amongst the indigenous population, which has benefitted from our general educational system. Second-generation immigrants show a similar tendency (though slower because of a certain degree of non-integration in mainstream).

But it's not a moot-point with me.


Ah, yes, switch one indoctrination and edicts for another. Its all the same in the end, thinking our beliefs and concepts are somehow exclusively truth. That even with our most advanced science we are somehow doing more than just scratching the surface of what is already present. Science and education do not "create" the truth, they merely observe and measure the things they can observe and measure. Even in accepted science, there are quite a few things that can be "observed" but not measured. The things we cant observe and measure with our limited systems are considered to be nonsense and conclusions are made without evidence. But just because it is beyond our science, just means it is beyond our science. We are too limited to claim such things as truth incarnate, just as they do in organized religion. They then relay this information through individual biases and perspectives, limited into words. These words are then conceptualized by the reader/listener, and put into their own perspective and bias. Its all a fun system, but it falls into the same trap as religion and that is thinking it "is" truth, and not simply the search for truth.

If the case would be higher education truly teaching the students to "learn to learn" there would be less atheists and theists and more people who simply claim individual belief systems, since that is what they are in the end anyway.


I make the guess, that you're a US citizen, and possibly with little firsthand contacts with europeans. If I'm correct in this, some of the cultural differences between americans and europeans would surprise you concerning the 'values' of life. Some of the attractive aims in US can be considered insignificant, even 'vulgar', in Europe, and the 'measuretapes' varies correspondingly. Sorry, maybe cryptic again. It means, that social darwinism is more pronounced in US, so US individuals are measured according to their social status more than to individual character and 'drives' become an important part of sociopsychological imprinting.

Thus I wouldn't be especially interested in the job, education, intelligence or religion of a stranger (this is a rather sweeping generalization, but does represent a kind of statistical average).
.


You missed the point, but i didnt make it very clear either. I was proposing that the choice between religion and non-religion are not based on what is "learned" but rather a natural pre-disposition to follow what makes sense to us. Someone who is lead to the way of atheism will still likely go in that direction if they do not attend "X." Someone who is lead to the way of theism will still likely go in that direction if they do not attend "X."

"little firsthand contacts with europeans." You are wrong.

Either way, i think this is going a bit off topic. The original proposition was that on average, atheists have a higher IQ than theists. I was simply giving my hypothesis as to why that might be the case. And since education has very little to do with IQ, i think it is going a bit out of the way for the original line of thinking. One could possibly even make the relation that a higher IQ will generally result in less educational success, and less education as a whole. And yet, the statistics show atheist to have, on average, a higher IQ. However, if you want to make a thread about the statistical relation between higher education and atheism, i encourage that. I wouldnt mind getting a discussion going on that
As far as i know, there is not a relation, but i havent looked into it much either.
edit on 2-1-2011 by sinohptik because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 2 2011 @ 05:03 PM
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Originally posted by sinohptik
To clarify my own position, i do not view an IQ score as a outright level of intelligence. I feel it tests the analytical ability of an individual, and not much beyond that. But, i am just now educating myself on the tests themselves, so its still a limited understanding. I personally think they are quite a few different forms of "intelligence" and if one has a great leaning and skill towards one, then they will likely be lacking in other areas of "intelligence."

An I.Q. test measures the the minimum ability of a person to do that I.Q. test.

I love puzzles, I was brought up with puzzles being the family's evening entertainment, and I love any kind of tests. So, given a puzzle-based test I perform well. However an equally intelligent person may hate puzzles, have no practice in them, and freeze up when confronted with a test. Of course that person will not perform well.

Different types of people will do well at different types of tests. My male rellies with Aspergers do great on puzzle tests, but if the test involves language skills they bomb out. Some friends go great if the test is based on language skills and general knowledge, but bomb out on anything relating to maths and geometry.

I have a son whose I.Q. was measured at 60, and I was told to put him in a home because he would only be a useless burden. This was Melbourne Royal Children's Hospital, 1981, which had a secret agenda of not "wasting" money on keeping mentally handicapped children alive. One test number 1 son, at 2 years old, was given there was to see how many blocks he could pile on top of each other. The doctor had been rude and intimidating to my son, thrust a bucket of blocks at him, and told him to build something. Son sat in the furthest corner and built a fortress protecting him from the doctor. As this neat, semicircular wall was only 3 blocks high, and a two year old was meant to be able to build a tower 8 blocks high, I was told my son was severely retarded. (There had been other aspects to the test, but that was typical of the way the tester made sure he got the results he was looking for.) Thanks to this idiot doctor, I could not prosecute my husband when he caused brain damage to our son, because he still tested the same as his his original diagnosis.

These days, this son does all the food shopping for our family, can cook a few different meals, can get over 9,000 on some songs on easy on Sing Star, and completed Uncharted 2 on easy mode without help. He works in a "special" wholesale nursery, and when they saw his info, with his low I.Q. score and inability to read or write, they rang and and said sorry, he was too low functioning to stay there. But I persuaded them to give him a chance, and now there are several jobs there, one being to check the plants to make sure everything is perfect before shipping them off to retail nurseries, that he does better than the "normals".

He has a brilliant memory for minor details, and an eye for detail which can't be measured by any I.Q. test.

There are many other skills which I.Q. tests don't test for, such as music, design, ability to craft . . .
The best maker of racing bikes in Victoria, (Australia,) used to be Norm Bates, an intellectually handicapped man who could only keep a business going if his customers took time to help him with the business side of things. In his particular field, the man was a genius.

I get sad when I.Q. tests are over-rated because I know how easy they were for me and how hard they were for my friends, yet my friends had skills and abilities which I lacked. In particular, they understood social stuff, and my high I.Q. did nothing to stop me being a social moron.
Of course it did help me survive being a social moron.




I am not so sure about education playing the vital role in atheism, but i would definitely say it plays a part.

Real education teaches people to think, to analyse, to use their own brains.
A good education like this is bound to produce more atheists, because many believers only believe because they accept what they are told without ever thinking for themselves.



posted on Jan, 2 2011 @ 05:13 PM
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I was tested and found to have a 169 I.Q. which is pretty typical for Jews it seems.

We have more nobel prize winners than any ethnic group which I ascribe to the rabbinical teaching method and work ethic.

However i'm just a career grunt so what do I know?

Except for a very unhealthy interest in physics and geology which all has done is keep me up at night and got in the way of infantry gung ho superb chaos

edit on 2-1-2011 by Yissachar1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 2 2011 @ 05:17 PM
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Yes, bout how many of those ethnic Jews are secular? From what I know, most of them are. I'd also put the almost uniformity of cultural emphasis on education.



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