Are atheists smarter than theists?
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01-10-2014, 02:50 PM
RE: Are atheists smarter than theists?
Not sure what our belief system has to do with intelligence? Huh

I know quite a few christians, and even though I believe they are brainwashed, it sure hasn't effected their intelligence, in my opinion.

I do strongly feel that a belief system, particularly from childhood, does alter our perception of the world around us....which would hinder some of our learning experiences.

For example: Being a christian in school, there were things I had to learn that went against my beliefs. I still had study and take tests, but never allowed it to sink in.

Going from christian to atheist, I can say that I am far more observant than I use to be, more skeptical, and have learned to question everything, but that's about it.

@OP - My answer would be No!

It's easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled. ~Mark Twain
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01-10-2014, 03:18 PM
RE: Are atheists smarter than theists?
(01-10-2014 12:35 PM)dirtstar Wrote:  No disrespect taken. I understand the need to not rock the cradle. If we ever hope to live in a world where the spiritual realm no longer dominates reality, telling them they're not as smart as us will probably just bring more denial, anger, and ultimately a defensive posture. But if there ever was a forum to discuss this on I thought this one would be a good choice. Merely not having the discussion for fear of offending seems more like being silenced.
I agree, this would be the place to discuss it, if there is a place. Maybe the discussion is worth something strictly from the viewpoint of being interested in the facts on the subject.

(01-10-2014 12:35 PM)dirtstar Wrote:  This is something I've SERIOUSLY gone back and forth with regarding my opinion. I'd be shocked if I were alone. This should not be offensive to any one singular theist because they could be the rare bird I referred to.
I do think theists would be offended though, even if they are one of the intelligent ones. The suggestion is that theists as a whole are less intelligent than atheists as a whole. Would you want to be in the less intelligent group? Moreover, would you want to be discussed in that context when it hasn't been factually established?

(01-10-2014 12:35 PM)dirtstar Wrote:  The ability to reason is what mainly stands out between atheists and theists. Is it not? If you disagree I'd like to hear why. If you research IQ tests and what they measure or have taken one yourself you will find the ability to reason is one such attribute they measure. If that's the case it just begs the question... how would the average IQ test scores compare when comparing atheists and theists?
Firstly, I'm not excited about IQ tests. One has to understand that those tests really measure performance and, from that, intelligence is extrapolated. Many factors can affect the test results besides intelligence - for example, learning style, test anxiety, room temperature, and cultural differences. But I also think the main difference between atheists and theists isn't necessarily the ability to reason. While that may be true for some, for others it's more the willingness to reason and specifically about religion. Willingness is undermined by early indoctrination and the resulting fears of hell and of offending one's god. Some people really would prefer not to know the truth because it's too scary and too emotionally upsetting.

Fox News: Praying Preying on ignorance since 1996.
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01-10-2014, 03:32 PM
RE: Are atheists smarter than theists?
Most everybody I know is theist. Most everybody I know functions well and is intelligent.

I think it's a silly question as being religious does not indicate a lack of intelligence. It's in our nature as children to trust what the important adults in our lives say, and after living through your life with religion being your "truth" it is not easy to discard. Even when you realize all you have on your side is "faith" I'm sure many of you know.

I prefer fantasy, but I have to live in reality.
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