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Interesting - but problematic statistics: Autism and Atheism

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posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 05:41 PM
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Originally posted by CynicalDrivel
You aren't responsible for your hard-wiring. You are responsible for your response to your hard-wiring. Simple enough.


True.

The hardest thing for me to learn was - - no matter what - - you still have to function in this world and society.

You can't really "drop out". You can try to find situations that fit your needs.




posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 05:54 PM
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Occasionally even, you find that there's no way the world can fit to you and you have to conform to it.

Physically, the best example of real-world coping issues on both ends of this mess is what those who are the Midgets/Dwarfism vs. Giants/Severely Obese. It is far easier for our society to build smaller rather than larger, (often cheaper too) so various folks with Giganticism/the Obese are out of luck when it comes to accommodations. the Obese are plain told to lose the weight--there's little sympathy there.



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 05:58 PM
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It seems to me that this is a particular idea I hadn't given much consideration to in my musings. What does it mean to be able to conjure in our own minds the likelihood of a "God" .. and what does it say of those who simply cannot?


It seems to me that conceptualizing a deity is well within the capabilities of most autists. What may be missing is the ability to form an emotional tie to that deity. Feeling a personal bond with your God goes a long way toward ameliorating nagging doubts.

Then too, if we can be said to produce "models" of other people in our minds, consisting of observed and correlated details about them, and that this "modeling" process is essential to relating to others; this process would presumably also apply to establishing a personal relationship with one's God.

Well, autists usually don't do so hot with establishing "models" of others, as we tend to miss a lot of the information necessary to do it. How much more difficult (and from the Autistic Athiest's viewpoint, purposeless and absurd) would it be to model and relate to a disembodied figure made of doctrine and impenetrable or nonsensical ritual?

So, there's that.

I guess I'm also pretty uncomfortable with the idea that Atheism could just be due to the fact that the "G-spot" in your brains is just an inactive spot on a cat scan.

Or, it could be a natural snake-oil immunity. I'm in the spectrum, and was raised as a West Texas style Southern Baptist. I was baptized three times in two years. Dunked under, water up the nose, wet, uncomfortable; absolutely no qualitative difference in my life. Maybe it just didn't take, let's giver 'er another go.

By age 7, I was just going through the motions, and I had learned not to ask certain questions the hard way.




edit on 19-9-2011 by mistermonculous because: grammars



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 06:08 PM
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There have been multiple studies (and TV shows highlighting them) on how the brains of the faithful light up when viewing relgious pictures. A family member who has fallen away seemed to take some degree of delight in discussing these studies and shows which speculated that faith was akin to a disease of the brain like manic depression or schizophrenia. So why is it okay to show that information but when the shoe is on the other foot is dark age drama?

Oh, that's right, because atheists generally consider that people of faith are somehow intellectually inferior or that they haven't asked (and answered) the tough questions. And it has been rather popular in the western world to spurn God for quite some time.

The report seems to invite investigation.

Note to poster directly above me: your post wasn't there when I started to compose mine, stepped away to tend a child then finished and posted. We happened to use similar language and I just wanted to let you know that I am not responding to your post or attacking you in any way.
edit on 19-9-2011 by watcher3339 because: (no reason given)

edit on 19-9-2011 by watcher3339 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 06:12 PM
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The plain fact is religion must die for mankind to live. The hour is getting very late to be able to indulge in having key decisions made by religious people - by irrationalists - by those who would steer the ship of state, not by a compass, but by the equivalent of reading the entrails of a chicken .Bill Maher:



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 06:20 PM
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i find it hard to beleve in a book (the bible) writen in a time when people said the world was flat



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 06:32 PM
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posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 06:50 PM
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Originally posted by watcher3339
There have been multiple studies (and TV shows highlighting them) on how the brains of the faithful light up when viewing relgious pictures. A family member who has fallen away seemed to take some degree of delight in discussing these studies and shows which speculated that faith was akin to a disease of the brain like manic depression or schizophrenia. So why is it okay to show that information but when the shoe is on the other foot is dark age drama?


I totally agree. This area lighting up appears to be characteristic of a healthy human brain, it's simply not reasonable to characterize it as akin to pathological conditions; most of which, ironically, are due to certain centers in the brain being deficient or inoperative.



Note to poster directly above me: your post wasn't there when I started to compose mine, stepped away to tend a child then finished and posted. We happened to use similar language and I just wanted to let you know that I am not responding to your post or attacking you in any way.


No worries, mang.



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 07:35 PM
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Originally posted by MrXYZ

Originally posted by Turq1
Social intelligence goes hand in hand with religion I think it could be said. Those with autism tend to lack in social intelligence. Not really a matter of how bright or dim someone with autism is when they're lacking that ability to understand people on par with others. Some of the scientists with the highest IQ can be pretty dumb when it comes to "people", yet they find no problems with their intellect which is a bit near sighted.


Nonsense!!

That's like saying only religious people have morals


What part is nonsense? Social intelligence tends to be decreased in those with high functioning autism, that's what science and medicine says. Church tends to be very social. So where does the nonsense part come in? Let's say someone has Asperger's, part of the diagnosis is lack of social intelligence. So tell me, how would they do better in a church setting compared to the other members?

Might want to add more to a reply than "nonsense" next time around.

edit on 19-9-2011 by Turq1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 08:06 PM
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Originally posted by mistermonculous
It seems to me that conceptualizing a deity is well within the capabilities of most autists. What may be missing is the ability to form an emotional tie to that deity. Feeling a personal bond with your God goes a long way toward ameliorating nagging doubts.
Considering that the whole point of Christianity is supposed to be about Relationships, (Yeah, many Christians miss that--as did I as a kid.) this is very much a crucial matter in the whole God Existence debate. There's little or no way to use full scientific reasoning on "what He did to change me," any more than there is a logical way to pin all the emotions a mother has for her child solely on her hormones. I'm not saying that there is NO science to it, that would be useless.


Then too, if we can be said to produce "models" of other people in our minds, consisting of observed and correlated details about them, and that this "modeling" process is essential to relating to others; this process would presumably also apply to establishing a personal relationship with one's God.
Two are used Biblically: Marriage and immediate family.


Well, autists usually don't do so hot with establishing "models" of others, as we tend to miss a lot of the information necessary to do it. How much more difficult (and from the Autistic Athiest's viewpoint, purposeless and absurd) would it be to model and relate to a disembodied figure made of doctrine and impenetrable or nonsensical ritual?
But difficulty doesn't mean impossible. This is some of the "not letting your hard-wiring" limit you. If you do have a problem with relationship abstracts, it's your job to find someone who has no problem with you that can help you understand them.


I guess I'm also pretty uncomfortable with the idea that Atheism could just be due to the fact that the "G-spot" in your brains is just an inactive spot on a cat scan.
So am I, especially since it makes me and my ilk the "b*******s who rained on the atheistic parade". It's a very uncomfortable position, even if this proves to be the 100% accurate way of looking at it.


Or, it could be a natural snake-oil immunity. I'm in the spectrum, and was raised as a West Texas style Southern Baptist. I was baptized three times in two years. Dunked under, water up the nose, wet, uncomfortable; absolutely no qualitative difference in my life. Maybe it just didn't take, let's giver 'er another go.

By age 7, I was just going through the motions, and I had learned not to ask certain questions the hard way.
A shame since just this little bit goes against the book that they think their views come from.

I'm not posting the following to convert you, but to show you a main reason why Christians who won't do this like this believe it to be wrong:

Greek definition of the word Baptize:
Studylight on the transliterated word for baptism: Baptizo

Definition
to dip repeatedly, to immerse, to submerge (of vessels sunk)
to cleanse by dipping or submerging, to wash, to make clean with water, to wash one's self, bathe
to overwhelm

Not to be confused with 911, bapto. The clearest example that shows the meaning of baptizo is a text from the Greek poet and physician Nicander, who lived about 200 B.C. It is a recipe for making pickles and is helpful because it uses both words. Nicander says that in order to make a pickle, the vegetable should first be 'dipped' (bapto) into boiling water and then 'baptised' (baptizo) in the vinegar solution. Both verbs concern the immersing of vegetables in a solution. But the first is temporary. The second, the act of baptising the vegetable, produces a permanent change.
Dunking under water can be the instigation of change for some people, but merely dunking under water isn't going to be a mangical conversion.
This can become a long theological debate, but this isn't the time or place for it.

But it does show that early Christianity understood the need for an attempt to control their own behavior. Everyone needs this--doesn't matter what their faith or lack of it is.



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 08:12 PM
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Originally posted by Turq1
What part is nonsense? Social intelligence tends to be decreased in those with high functioning autism, that's what science and medicine says. Church tends to be very social. So where does the nonsense part come in? Let's say someone has Asperger's, part of the diagnosis is lack of social intelligence. So tell me, how would they do better in a church setting compared to the other members?

Might want to add more to a reply than "nonsense" next time around.
It's because you can be right (yes, Asperger's got problems with socialising and yes, there is a lot of socialization REQUIRED for a religion to work as a group), but because you used words that triggered a negative association to him.



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 08:31 PM
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reply to post by Turq1
 


when i was a kid and hadn't been diagnosed yet, i HATED church. it wasn't the sermon, or pastor, or getting up, it was the hundreds of people, and everyone talking at once. so much to keep track of, and i felt incredibly anxious/awkward.

i thought everyone experienced things the same way i did, but i was just weak, because everyone else overcame it.

i don't go to church, mainly because of the social aspect. i'm not a loner, and i have friends, but soooo many people is incredibly painful. the way i see it, if god made me this way, then he can get over my not going to church.



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 09:23 PM
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reply to post by Maxmars
 


My wife is an exceptionally gifted speech pathologist who has worked with particularly challenging adult and pediatric consumers identified on the autistic spectrum. The cause of autism is a frequent subject in our home.

She has noted a statistically significant connection between parents who work in the fields of science, engineering aeronautics and the chances of having a child on the spectrum. Generally one and sometimes both parents work in those fields.

Anecdotally, as a chem/bio double major, I noticed a higher degree of atheism in the sciences. I am a firm believer in the lamp post theory. I would wager the percentage of "scientists" to be greater than atheists.

Furthermore, the onset of autism usually precedes the onset of speech and certainly precedes the onset of abstract reasoning necessary to grasp the concept of God. I'm not buying it. The conclusions are speculative and cannot be validated.



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 09:31 PM
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Originally posted by zarp3333
She has noted a statistically significant connection between parents who work in the fields of science, engineering aeronautics and the chances of having a child on the spectrum. Generally one and sometimes both parents work in those fields.


Perhaps an evolutionary process.

These discussions always remind me of Greg Bear's book "Darwin's Radio".



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 09:39 PM
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edit on 19-9-2011 by mistermonculous because: too punchy.



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 10:01 PM
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Originally posted by zarp3333
reply to post by Maxmars
 

She has noted a statistically significant connection between parents who work in the fields of science, engineering aeronautics and the chances of having a child on the spectrum. Generally one and sometimes both parents work in those fields.

Anecdotally, as a chem/bio double major, I noticed a higher degree of atheism in the sciences. I am a firm believer in the lamp post theory. I would wager the percentage of "scientists" to be greater than atheists.


Your wife may be interested in a book by Thomas Sowell - "Late Talking Children". Very interesting look at a self-selected group of families with children that fit a description of "almost" autistic. Very high statistical presence of engineers, scientists, musicians, artists, accountants and the like. Read it and said "my kiddo never had a chance"
In three generations we have two electrical engineers (hubby & his dad), accountant (me), Electronic board designer (grandma), two computer programmers (grandpa & uncle), biologist (uncle), two artists (great grandma & great grandpa), musician (great grandpa)...

ETA - and out of all of those none attend a church. Hmmm...
edit on 19-9-2011 by Mountainmeg because: ETA



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 10:06 PM
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Originally posted by Turq1
Social intelligence goes hand in hand with religion I think it could be said. Those with autism tend to lack in social intelligence. Not really a matter of how bright or dim someone with autism is when they're lacking that ability to understand people on par with others. Some of the scientists with the highest IQ can be pretty dumb when it comes to "people", yet they find no problems with their intellect which is a bit near sighted.


However, social intelligence can be learned. One teacher my son had pointed out that children on the autism scale who have higher intelligence, can learn the social part. On my part, I carry a huge "if-then" chart in my head detailing how to deal with people in social situations.

BTW, while I cannot subscribe to a religion, I also find atheism to be illogical as well. Atheism is also a faith-based decision that there is nothing - and you can't prove a negative. I tend to view it as a religion just like Catholicism or Mormonism, etc.



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 10:11 PM
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Originally posted by Bob Sholtz
i don't go to church, mainly because of the social aspect. i'm not a loner, and i have friends, but soooo many people is incredibly painful. the way i see it, if god made me this way, then he can get over my not going to church.
Organized faith with a traditional rigid service drives me up the wall as well, and I'm a "religious" churchgoer. (Ah, a play on words!) So while not many of us can understand the depth of your inability to function in a church setting, it's not like all of us function the whole time, or even most of the time. Not at all Autistic, most likely ADHD...in a girl (less likely to happen, from what I've been told most of my life). I was never tested, but a teacher told my father I'd never be able to hold down a job or graduate from school. He just bribed me to pay more attention.



Used to go to church, preacher went too long
Stand up, sit down, sing another song
I was sittin' there but my mind was gone
When was this gonna end (yawn)
Christian song: "Creek Don't Rise" How I dealt with it was I quit going to larger congregations, but chose a congregation of the same beliefs that has only a handful of members. There are far more options than just dropping out altogether, but I don't blame you for doing it.



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 10:16 PM
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Originally posted by Mountainmeg
Atheism is also a faith-based decision that there is nothing - and you can't prove a negative.


No its not.

That is a very ignorant conception of Atheism.



posted on Sep, 19 2011 @ 10:22 PM
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Originally posted by MountainmegBTW, while I cannot subscribe to a religion, I also find atheism to be illogical as well. Atheism is also a faith-based decision that there is nothing - and you can't prove a negative. I tend to view it as a religion just like Catholicism or Mormonism, etc.
Hrm, something that goes along with your conclusion:

Ro 12:1 Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.
In Context

Oy, the Bible again.


But there's a point: In Christianity, when most groups follow this text, they recognize that it's a part of worship to live your full everyday life for God. It's a form of worship called sacrifice. The interesting thing that makes this a bit more global a definition of religion is that this can be pared down to: your faith and religion is what you commit your time to, what you check your actions by. This not only describes Atheism a religion, it makes your job your religion when it supersedes any other belief system.
This is probably the widest definition for Religion, and it's pretty darn old.



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