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E-FrameZenderblast
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19 Dec 2010, 6:16 pm

I was not sure whether to post this in here or the Philosophy, Politics and Religion section, but I thought this was more relevant...

I have noticed that many online pages and such say that people with Asperger Syndrome usually have a more logical mind (one went so far as to speculate that 99% of the human population breed while the 1% or so of Aspies are designed for advancing society and technology) and there are a lot of logically minded individuals on this site (if perhaps emotionally volatile at times, so am I :evil: :cry: :lol: ). Many philosophers and geniuses I have read about seem to have many Aspergers qualities to them, such as having difficulty socialising or being antisocial, obsessing on specific topics, getting either very emotional or showing no emotion and sometimes having strange quirks. Most of them seem to be philosophers (though I do not bother looking at others, as philosophy is my special interest).

Are people with Asperger Syndrome made of the same stuff as many of history's most successful philosophers?



samsa
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19 Dec 2010, 6:23 pm

E-FrameZenderblast wrote:
Are people with Asperger Syndrome made of the same stuff as many of history's most successful philosophers?

Short answer - yes, it's been speculated that a lot of philosophers have AS-like qualities (as you've said in your post.)

That's not to say that someone without AS can't be a philosopher, just that most philosophers seem to have some form of autism.


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Asp-Z
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19 Dec 2010, 6:25 pm

I have philosophical mind, and from what I've seen, a lot of other Aspies do too.



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19 Dec 2010, 6:39 pm

I would say... yes. There's some benefit to autistic brain wiring when it comes to philosophy. It's not really that we're better at it; it's that we don't have this obstacle that NT philosophers have. A philosopher has to question what he's been taught about life, about himself, about others, about the nature of the mind and of existence; and he has to try to get rid of preconceived ideas. Now, an NT will easily soak up the ideas of the people around him through his culture; he'll take them for granted and may not even know they're there. An autistic person will be learning those things explicitly, thinking about them consciously. Because he's more aware of them, it's easier for the autistic person to set them aside, analyze them, or compare them to things that aren't part of his culture.

Autistics also make good sociologists, animal behaviorists, artists, and scientists in general, for similar reasons.


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19 Dec 2010, 6:42 pm

No one is a born philosopher. Philosophy is learned.

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19 Dec 2010, 7:00 pm

I don't have an opinion either way, but I read this in a book (The Complete Guide to Asperger's Syndrome by Tony Attwood):

Quote:
Introspection and self-consciousness

Uta Frith and Francesca Happé (1999) have suggested that due to differences in the acquisition and nature of ToM abilities in the cognitive development of children with Asperger’s syndrome, theymay develop a different formof self-consciousness. The child may acquire ToMabilities using intelligence and experience rather than intuition,which can eventually lead to an alternative form of self-consciousness as the child reflects on his or her ownmental state and themental states of others. Frith andHappé (1999) have described this highly reflective and explicit self-consciousness as similar to that of philosophers.

I have read the autobiographies of adults with Asperger’s syndrome and would agree that there is a quasi-philosophical quality. When a different way of thinking and perceiving the world is combined with advanced intellectual abilities we achieve
new advances in philosophy. It is interesting to note that the philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein had many of the characteristics of an intellectually ‘gifted’ person with Asperger’s syndrome (Gillberg 2002).


I've also been told I write like I have a degree in philosophy and an understanding of postmodernism, but I'd never read anything in-depth at that point (well, some Plato for a college project, but that's about it). I'm not sure how much I believe it, but it was flattering.



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19 Dec 2010, 7:03 pm

Yeah, mostly Schopenhauer.


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CockneyRebel
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19 Dec 2010, 7:45 pm

Even though I don't come close to being one, I'd have to say that the majority are.


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Cicely
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19 Dec 2010, 8:44 pm

I muse about philosophical things. But I didn't like my philosophy class last term.



theexternvoid
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19 Dec 2010, 9:28 pm

I don't know, but to use a sample size of 1, I am very philosophical. I love reading philosophy. Even before I discovered philosophy I was philosophizing and not realizing it. After taking discrete math, I tried to apply its techniques to describes existence. I began with the single axiom "true" and went from there. Was able to prove that we must believe that reality exists and we must believe that our senses give us a good approximation of what's real.



Merculangelo
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20 Dec 2010, 10:40 am

I've been a sort of philosopher. I've read a lot of what would be in the philosophy section of a bookstore or library. But i'm only now suspecting that my philosophy is a different philosophy than the rest. Most of what I read now that is "philosophy," that would be written by someone in the philosophy department, for example, makes no sense to me and seems like silly word play.

My interest has now drifted toward the related Cognitive Science.



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20 Dec 2010, 10:58 am

I suppose I would be called an armchair philosopher. (I sit, therefore I am?)

I have read some formal philosophical material, but not in a long while. It always seemed like it said the same thing in 50 different ways.

We know we know things but we don't know what knowing is and we don't know what can't be known by us but might be knowledge anyway.

Meh.

Who knows?


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XFilesGeek
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21 Dec 2010, 11:48 am

I have a philosophical mindset; however, I hate philosophy.

Mostly, I've found it's just an excuse for psuedo-intellectuals to talk bollocks. And I've met very few self-indentified "philosophers" who weren't also egotistical snobs.

These discussions seem to hinge on one's ability to memorize a large, silly vocabularly comprised of large, silly words not used by the general population, and then feeling superior to anyone who's not in the "club" of large, silly word-users. When I find someone who's actually interested in talking abstract concepts, I'm pleased, but I get very little pleasure from idea exchanges with "philosophers."

Meh.


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21 Dec 2010, 12:50 pm

XFilesGeek wrote:
Meh.


Exactly.


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21 Dec 2010, 3:33 pm

XFilesGeek wrote:
I have a philosophical mindset; however, I hate philosophy.

Mostly, I've found it's just an excuse for psuedo-intellectuals to talk bollocks. And I've met very few self-indentified "philosophers" who weren't also egotistical snobs.

These discussions seem to hinge on one's ability to memorize a large, silly vocabularly comprised of large, silly words not used by the general population, and then feeling superior to anyone who's not in the "club" of large, silly word-users. When I find someone who's actually interested in talking abstract concepts, I'm pleased, but I get very little pleasure from idea exchanges with "philosophers."

Meh.


That sounds more like academia to me. Don't confuse philosophy with the ridiculous practices that originate in those perverted institutions. :lol:


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