The Psychology of Atheism
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31-03-2016, 09:44 AM
RE: The Psychology of Atheism
(31-03-2016 02:06 AM)jakedanger Wrote:  Any comments on an idea I heard recently? The speaker, a Christian, was attempting to explain who so many scientists are atheists and why atheists tend to be male.

Unless you give specifics, like name, a website, credentials, etc. we are left with little to judge him or her on. Since he was a christian speaking about atheists, those are two big, red flags.

(31-03-2016 02:06 AM)jakedanger Wrote:  His reasoning was that scientists as a group, and males as a group, tend to be higher on the autism spectrum than the general population, and that people on the autism spectrum have trouble assigning intelligent agency to their observations.

The same reasoning that allows him to believe in religion?

Autism is a spectrum. It is a very wide range of traits and each trait can manifest greatly in severity. One thing that atheists and autistics do have in common is that they have very little in common. Knowing the behaviors of one autistic person does not automatically help you know the behaviors of any others. Autism is incredibly complex, so much so that those on the spectrum have little in common.

Atheism is incredibly simple. It is not a world view, a philosophy or a religion. It is an answer to a question. "Do you believe in god?" If you answer "No", then you are an atheist. There is nothing else under the atheist banner. Atheism is so simple that those to whom it applies have little in common.

(31-03-2016 02:06 AM)jakedanger Wrote:  Comments? Please see the articles below:

Whatthehell. I'll bite.

(31-03-2016 02:06 AM)jakedanger Wrote:  https://www.bigquestionsonline.com/2014/...rrational/
While I would not call the website extreme, fundamentalist or fanatic, it and it's sponsors definitely operate from a religious standpoint. The author is a professor of religious studies.

And he starts off by misquoting Marx in the second sentence. This does not bode well. After reading the entire thing, it's not as bad as it looked at first, but I have issues with it.

First he talks about the Agenct Detection and Theory of Mind, basically the understanding that we are pattern seeking animals. But then he makes an assumption:
Quote:Atheism, however, has not received much attention. I suspect this is due to the following: the vast majority of those who work on these topics are atheists or agnostics who view religious belief as false and even bizarre. Given this assumption, the project of psychological explanations of religion is to explain how otherwise rational people could hold obviously false beliefs. Unlike religious belief, their own beliefs (agnosticism or atheism), so the narrative goes, are products of coolly rational reflection—the triumph of reason over superstition. The project then is to seek out the malfunction that produces religious belief; atheism gets a free pass.

(Bolding mine) Why make that assumption? Why not do the research and find out? Is this assumption the consensus of the scientific community? Or just the biased assumption of the author?

So essentially his idea is this:

Autistic people often have difficulty recognizing human traits and other humans.
Most humans seek to recognize patterns and agents/causes in their experiences.
Most humans assign a god or supernatural agent to those patterns
Since autistic persons have trouble recognizing human traits they don't assign them to the patterns and don't assume there is a god.
Many scientists are atheists
Many scientists have more autistic traits
Scientists who are atheists are autistic and can't see god.


That's my paraphrasing/condensing of it. The article itself spells it out better.

My thoughts?
It's his opinion.
It's based more on science than the bible.
It's biased and based on his own assumptions.
It's not overly insulting or offensive.
Back it up with research, data, facts, etc. and we'll see.

(31-03-2016 02:06 AM)jakedanger Wrote:  http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/science/...rsity.html

This one basically states that STEM people tend to have more autistic traits then others. This supports some of the previous articles basis, but not the authors conclusions.

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31-03-2016, 09:49 AM
RE: The Psychology of Atheism
(31-03-2016 09:38 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  
(31-03-2016 09:27 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  When it comes to the disproportionate amount of african american in prisons, there's been a considerable amount of effort devoted to explaining why that is, even though there are plenty of non-blacks in prison. It's often accounted for, by pointing to a variety of factors unique to the group, including social and institutional biases that contribute here all.

If you believe that the reasons for these disparities when it comes to self-idenitying atheists, have a great deal to with socioeconomic factors, access to education, social stigmas, I would like to hear you expand on their contributions here.

We are still waiting on you to meet your burden of proof for explaining:
1) why the causation exists in the first place among white males
2) which of us ever actually said it was true and that we believed the causation existed


We will wait. Drinking Beverage


I am pointing out to you, yet again, that your bullshit assertions, yet again, are completely baseless and are instead a failing of your ignorant assumptions and presumptions. Your ignorance parades about as knowledge...yet again.

What did I assert again here?

As I recall I primarily asked a series of question, to hear what the take of individuals here would be, while refraining from making assertions myself. I didn't really say anything as to why atheists tend to be more male than female, or tend to be more white than non-white, but primarily asked others why they believe that is.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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31-03-2016, 09:49 AM
RE: The Psychology of Atheism
I haven't read the whole thread, sorry. But I grew up being an overly, almost hyperly imaginative child. But unlike autistic children I was emotionally connected with my siblings and very close to my parents. I'm rather the opposite of an autistic individual. But it's because I'm so familiar with the language of imagination in myself I easily recognize the same mindset elsewhere.

When I finally got around to reading the Bible I immediately knew its source wasn't an actual god but the imaginative storytelling of men who were full of fear. These were people who needed a father-deity for comfort and discipline and someone to rally around and beat up the neighborhood bullies. For some people god is a mental delusion but for many others it grew from emotional needs which were inturn translated by the human imagination.

Shakespeare's Comedy of Errors.... on Donald J. Trump:

He is deformed, crooked, old, and sere,
Ill-fac’d, worse bodied, shapeless every where;
Vicious, ungentle, foolish, blunt, unkind,
Stigmatical in making, worse in mind.
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31-03-2016, 09:52 AM
RE: The Psychology of Atheism
(31-03-2016 09:42 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  Want to bet that the majority of college degree earners over the last few decades in the US are dominantly white?
https://nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/display.asp?id=72

And they're also dominantly more female than male. Yet the inverse is true when it comes to self-identyfing atheists.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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31-03-2016, 09:54 AM
RE: The Psychology of Atheism
(31-03-2016 02:06 AM)jakedanger Wrote:  Any comments on an idea I heard recently? The speaker, a Christian, was attempting to explain who so many scientists are atheists and why atheists tend to be male. His reasoning was that scientists as a group, and males as a group, tend to be higher on the autism spectrum than the general population, and that people on the autism spectrum have trouble assigning intelligent agency to their observations. He said that when his sister was 12 years old, she believed that houses and cars grew out of the ground like plants, and she was flabbergasted when she was told that houses and cars were intelligently designed for a purpose. Comments? Please see the articles below:

https://www.bigquestionsonline.com/2014/...rrational/
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/science/...rsity.html

Autism is real. My cousin has an autistic son. But it has become a cult disease, like lactose intolerant. Every one wishes to have Ass-burgers and declare that their aberrations are due to Autism. So what, in reality, would be 'high on the autism spectrum?' Would it have any real meaning, beyond 'I don't understand that guy so he must be sick.'
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31-03-2016, 09:54 AM
RE: The Psychology of Atheism
(31-03-2016 09:52 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(31-03-2016 09:42 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  Want to bet that the majority of college degree earners over the last few decades in the US are dominantly white?
https://nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/display.asp?id=72

And they're also dominantly more female than male. Yet the inverse is true when it comes to self-identyfing atheists.

But we're all made in the image of god. So I guess your professed categories are denied by your claims, aren't they ?
Tongue

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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31-03-2016, 10:01 AM
RE: The Psychology of Atheism
(31-03-2016 09:54 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(31-03-2016 09:52 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  And they're also dominantly more female than male. Yet the inverse is true when it comes to self-identyfing atheists.

But we're all made in the image of god. So I guess your professed categories are denied by your claims, aren't they ?
Tongue

No, women are lesser and made of the rib of man & the reason for all of this torment and folly of life. So no wonder they are less likely to retaliate against god again and blaspheme the holy ghost. They don't want the negative press after the 2nd coming happensEvil_monster.

"Allow there to be a spectrum in all that you see" - Neil Degrasse Tyson
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31-03-2016, 10:02 AM
RE: The Psychology of Atheism
I just quickly scanned this useless thread, but i all i understod was that someone tries to establish "Atheists are male, white (did i forget middle aged?), autistic nerds" Facepalm
As if that would have any impact on the validity of the atheists´ position. Its a (pretty weak) attempt of a fucking humongous ad hominem attack in disguise.
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31-03-2016, 10:11 AM
RE: The Psychology of Atheism
(31-03-2016 10:01 AM)ClydeLee Wrote:  
(31-03-2016 09:54 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  But we're all made in the image of god. So I guess your professed categories are denied by your claims, aren't they ?
Tongue

No, women are lesser and made of the rib of man & the reason for all of this torment and folly of life. So no wonder they are less likely to retaliate against god again and blaspheme the holy ghost. They don't want the negative press after the 2nd coming happensEvil_monster.

How could I forget. My bad. Aquinas (about Eve) : "The serpent approached her first as the light of reason shone less brightly in her". (Compendium of Theology).
Angel

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31-03-2016, 10:19 AM
RE: The Psychology of Atheism
(31-03-2016 06:13 AM)Chas Wrote:  I have yet to hear a reasoned or informed opinion from a theist regarding atheists or atheism. Drinking Beverage

I dunno. Deidre here certainly has given me a fair shake.
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