Thursday, February 5, 2009

Maybe This Explains Creationists Too

Well, chalk up another reason why teenagers are so rebellious and dismissive of parental authority. According to this study, teenagers haven't fully developed their "theory of mind" and have a more difficult time figuring out what other people think.

After reading the article, I can say that it sure looks similar to what happens when I talk with creationists. No matter how logical and reasonable the evidence is, no matter how many times the theories are explained, no matter how hard I try to get them to "imagine no religion" (even for a moment) - they refuse to do it.

Based on this report, it may not be because they choose to refuse, but because they can't do it at all. Trying to view things from another's perspective is difficult anyway, especially when that other view is radically different from your own. But if this research is correct, those with younger, less developed minds will have an even greater difficulty doing so. And we all know creationists don't like to think very hard about things -- they'd rather be spoon-fed their beliefs and simply parrot talking points and canards without reflecting on the reasoning and rationale behind them.

Of course, if this does explain creationist thinking, then it also implies that there may be other parts of their brains that are underdeveloped -- I wonder if there's a test for development of critical thinking and skepticism?

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