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timf
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17 Nov 2017, 8:43 pm

I posted a link to a free booklet previously that some people had difficulty downloading. The booklet is located here as well and this link might be more reliable.

The booklet describes a view of Aspergers as a neurological variant rather than a defect or disability. The sensory and neurological processing intensity results in a greater degree of conscious control (intentionality) of one's though process that results in children developing apart from the more typical reflexive (sort of "autopilot") integration other children have into their larger social world.

While this can initially appear as a handicap when a child is younger, at some point an intentional life can provide benefits above what might be available to those sailing through life on "cruise control".

http://christianpioneer.com/blogarchiev ... e_2017.pdf



B19
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17 Nov 2017, 9:06 pm

If you are the author, then you have put a lot of thought into this and you write in a very clear and concise way. Well done! If you aren't, could you tell us who the author is?

I had no trouble accessing the link though for ?? some reason it was hard to close.



Dear_one
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18 Nov 2017, 6:56 am

The intro looks encouraging. Do you have any ideas on how to get into the professional discourse?



timf
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18 Nov 2017, 12:15 pm

Thank you for your kind words.

I wrote it and I have no credentials with which to impress anyone. The words need to speak for themselves. I was aware that my path through life was different, but I never considered that it was categorically classifiable. When I was in my 60s, I began to research the subject of Aspergers and while I found descriptors such as social awkwardness, sensory issues, and eye avoidance to be accurate, I found them less than helpful.

My thinking followed a path of attempting to construct a thesis that would account for the characteristics, but also include a developmental construct that could explain why some Aspergers people seem crippled with anxiety and others are brash to the point of being bullies themselves.

In the 1960s my father (a physician) found in the new medical literature of the time a hypothesis that my poor school performance (the basic measurement of children at the time (as well as now)) might be accounted for by some sort of undefinable brain defect or damage. I was given an EEG and nothing abnormal was detected. This left them with medication as the only alternative “treatment”. 60mg of dexadrine in the morning and 500mg of placidyl at night was an interesting preparation for the drug culture that was about to explode across the country.

In my research of Aspegers I evaluated the brain damage and autism theses and found them unpersuasive. I see no reason not to consider Aspergers the result of normal neurological variation. I put this thesis into writing because I feel that others may benefit from this perspective. About 30 years ago I spent several years working on a crisis hotline and came to appreciate how much pain in life some people can experience.

I think that with a better understanding of foundational and developmental principals, a person who has intentional control of his inner thought life might be able to develop more effective management and coping strategies. For example, the person with debilitating anxieties might be able to, upon recognizing their heightened sensitivity, experiment with encounters where they intentionally force themselves to engage with others and measure the extent to which their apprehension was either justified or exaggerated.

The obnoxious blowhard could even be encouraged to reflect on the effect his behavior has on others. The person who sees in every comment some insult or threat, may find an opportunity to benefit from dismissing some motive assumptions.

This thesis is not a panacea or remedy, but a starting point where those of us who have developed on our own, might be able to now exert intentional control to alter some of the mental constructs that we configured as children and which often now hinder us as adults. For parents of Asperger children there is an opportunity to recognize what is going on in their children’s thinking which might provide a connection point with a child that seems to be otherwise unresponsive to them.



Dear_one
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18 Nov 2017, 12:32 pm

Yeah, I don't know how to get the academics to read my stuff either. Maybe a few letters after your name would put them at ease initially and get you a hearing. We are dealing with herd animals here, furshur, and they don't want to lose their funding by recognizing actual progress elsewhere.
Your work reminds me of Napoleon Hill's emphasis on concentration: https://www.wimp.com/napoleon-hill-what ... d-achieve/



Terminus
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18 Nov 2017, 7:02 pm

timf wrote:
For example, the person with debilitating anxieties might be able to, upon recognizing their heightened sensitivity, experiment with encounters where they intentionally force themselves to engage with others and measure the extent to which their apprehension was either justified or exaggerated


I've accidentally fallen into this type of situation. It's tricky. Perhaps the most difficult part was just going with it and ignoring the superficial observations by others (ie, people commentating on your body language). To clarify: ignoring by being a "third person" and looking at the situation. I think it's like "observing" from a 4th dimension maybe? I can see it in my mind but have a hard time explaining in words.

It could be like realizing consciously that you are dreaming and an entire new world opening up. I've only been lucky enough to experience that a hand-full of times, though one could say life itself is a dream.

And the more I think about, this could be positive or negative. It's all nice to assume science is for the greater good, but I can see others using this detached perspective to do horrendous things as well. Maybe that's one way to tell that its real science and not just fluffy feel-goodism since actual tools can be used for good and bad alike.



timf
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19 Nov 2017, 1:57 pm

Thanks for the reference to Napoleon Hill. I had never heard of him, but when I looked him up on Wikipedia I discovered he was a sort of positive thinking guy. As I read down his biography I got the feeling that his views were similar to the occult practices I had read about that were popular here and in England 100 years ago. In particular there was an idea that one could achieve one’s material desires by projecting one’s thoughts from the Astral plane, through the Etheric plane into the material world. When I got to the end of his biography it was no surprise to discover that this was his inclination.

I should apologize if I gave the impression that this was the type of mental process I was advocating. To clarify, my thesis is that greater neurological intensity results in children playing a greater intentional role in the development of their own internal though processes. This often results in mental constructs that are often social hindrances such as avoiding others to ease anxiety, delayed maturation resulting from a child’s preference for play, expounding the results of information collected about a special interest without regard for the interest of others, or the absolute certainty that whatever one has constructed in one’s own mind is the standard to use in judging right and wrong (which usually results in seeing others as always “wrong”).

These ways of thinking are often obstacles to a better functioning life. Since they are formed so early in life and so much is later built upon them, They are very difficult to alter.As a result, an Aspergers person may feel at a loss as to why they do not “fit” well into the larger society comprised mostly of those who had their internal thought processes more conformed automatically to to the world around them. I suggest that the inclination to have greater intentional control over internal thought processes may have developmentally resulted in greater difficulty, this same inclination, taken advantage of later in life, can be used to make modifications resulting in reduced deficits and occasionally even greater advantages.

In regard to the academic community, I prefer not to be so entangled. While there are rational academics converse with whom can be interesting and stimulating, the vast majority are driven by and limited to dynamics that do not often include truth (such as prestige, funding, and orthodoxy).

Terminus,

I am not sure detachment is so much a requirement in the application of intentional thought. To cite a personal example, when I was 30 I joined a social organization that had a party at the home of different people each month. It was difficult for me to go by myself to such a social function. However, I found that if I arrived a little early, I could help the hosts set up for the party and then greet those arriving early as well. After about 20 minutes enough people had arrived as to be overwhelming, so I would leave. I found I could accommodate a social activity but in a way that was tolerable for me.

I never became a social or party “animal”, however, I was able to make significant progress in one-on-one social discourse. This required me to make an alteration of one of my childish developmental constructs, that of thinking that small talk with other people is a waste of time. By intentionally seeing value in some “small talk”, I am able to converse with more people and somewhat decrease their reaction to me as a self-centered jerk.

I can see where detachment might insulate me from the reaction of others, but I cannot see how it would provide any relational improvement.

Neurotypical people may not be able to appreciate the demands of intentional mental processing and therefore just assume an Aspergers person to be indifferent or selfish. My thesis is that intentional processing does not have to be be shut off or that negative reactions of others should be ignored, but that (using the example of small talk) that something that is burdensome, can be borne a little easier if one can perceive value in it.

Consider that the life of a child is one that naturally shuns work and seeks play. However, it is the fortunate adult that sees reward in their work. My thesis is similar in that the ways of thinking that we intentionally followed when we were children now need intentional modification as adults to help us better function in the social world of today. I do not see a “cure” for Aspergers (and would personally resist one). However, I think that there is room for the Aspergers adult to (by exercise of intentional control) come to a more optimal accommodation with the neurotypical world.



the_phoenix
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19 Nov 2017, 2:00 pm

Just want to say I appreciate your writing, timf. :)



Dear_one
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19 Nov 2017, 3:14 pm

I'm sorry that the resemblance to Napoleon Hill's work was not a useful connection - I'd just happened across a reference to his deliberate focussing. I'm really not able to give your work the thorough reading it deserves yet. I've got a backlog to review, and other writing to do that requires different research. However, it is a great change from all the "helpers" that want to make us look average.