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Author Topic:   Religious Belief and IQ
Percy
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Posts: 22280
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
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(1)
Message 1 of 22 (744079)
12-08-2014 7:46 AM


LinkedIn email'd a link to this today:
There's no text and no references, just a number of charts indicating an inverse correlation between religious belief and IQ, e.g.:
Is this believable? Many religious people are obviously very intelligent (Stephen Meyer, Michael Behe, etc.). On the other hand many of the creationists who come here know very little, but it's a self-selected group. There's an air of the oblivious in these people who enter eagerly into discussions on subjects about which they know little. They seem unaware and even unable to detect or figure out when they don't know something. Maybe that's the mark of an intelligent person - they know when they don't know.
--Percy

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dwise1
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Posts: 5893
Joined: 05-02-2006
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Message 2 of 22 (744085)
12-08-2014 8:32 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Percy
12-08-2014 7:46 AM


Many religious people are obviously very intelligent (Stephen Meyer, Michael Behe, etc.). On the other hand many of the creationists who come here know very little, but it's a self-selected group. There's an air of the oblivious in these people who enter eagerly into discussions on subjects about which they know little. They seem unaware and even unable to detect or figure out when they don't know something
I would agree that the clueless creationists we normally have to deal with on-line and even in real life are a self-selected and biased sampling of the entire creationist population. An intelligent creationist would realize when his arguments are weak and would avoid having to try to defend them against a knowledgeable opponent in an open discussion (of which a creationist-run "debate" would not be an example). An unintelligent or merely extremely ignorant creationist would not know any better.
In the preface of his book, The Age of the Earth, G. Brent Dalrymple explains his reasons for writing the book. His first encounter with creationists was in 1975 when Duane Gish and Henry Morris visited Menlo Park to present their case for creationism in an evening seminar to several hundred scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey. The response that Gish and Morris received consisted of several attempts to correct their misunderstandings, especially their bizarre misinterpretation of the Second Law of Thermodynamics. Gish and Morris were intelligent men and they were indeed able to learn from their mistakes. After that experience they learned to not talk to scientists.
There's a local creationist activist, Bill Morgan, who is also obviously intelligent; eg, he is a licensed practical engineer. Another mark of his intelligence is that he is very careful in picking his opponents and other victims. When his opponent/victim understands the subject matter and knows what he is talking about, Bill is so sweet and friendly that butter couldn't melt in his mouth ... as he avoids entering into any discussion about creationism and tries to disengage as quickly as possible. But if his victim is not knowledgeable, then Bill becomes aggressive and bullying and viciously mocking. Being intelligent, Bill knows that he must pick his audiences and victims carefully; he would never dare show up here nor in any other open forum.
Rather, it is the clueless creationists who navely believe the claims that they are spreading while at the same time don't understand any of it, which becomes glaringly obvious when we try to discuss their claims with them. In fact, I've noticed for decades that the surest way to make a creationist very angry is to take their claims seriously and try to discuss them with them. It took me a long time to figure out that that was because they simply did not know what they were talking about and didn't dare admit it.

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jar
Member (Idle past 365 days)
Posts: 34026
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004


Message 3 of 22 (744086)
12-08-2014 8:34 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Percy
12-08-2014 7:46 AM


Navid Khiabani CEO & Chairman at Navid Pars America
If you Google the person and company you find some most interesting material related to the believability of that individual.

Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

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Dogmafood
Member (Idle past 319 days)
Posts: 1815
From: Ontario Canada
Joined: 08-04-2010


(2)
Message 4 of 22 (744087)
12-08-2014 8:35 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Percy
12-08-2014 7:46 AM


Education vs Intelligence
How do they distinguish between intelligence and education when doing IQ tests?

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Tangle
Member
Posts: 9470
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 6.0


(2)
Message 5 of 22 (744094)
12-08-2014 8:56 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Percy
12-08-2014 7:46 AM


From:
Richard Lynn, John Harvey, Helmuth Nyborg, Average intelligence predicts atheism rates across 137 nations, Intelligence, Volume 37, Issue 1, January—February 2009, Pages 11-15, ISSN 0160-2896, Redirecting.
2.1. (1) Negative correlations between intelligence and religious belief
A number of studies find negative correlations between intelligence and religious belief. A review of these carried out by Bell (2002) found 43 studies, of which all but four found a negative correlation. To these can be added a study in the Netherlands of a nationally representative sample (total N = 1538) that reported that agnostics scored 4 IQs higher than believers ( Verhage, 1964). In a more recent study Kanazawa (in press) has analysed the data of the American National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, a national sample initially tested for intelligence with the PPVT (Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test) as adolescents and interviewed as young adults in 2001—2 (N = 14,277). At this interview they were asked: To what extent are you a religious person? The responses were coded not religious at all, slightly religious, moderately religious, and very religious. The results showed that the not religious at all group had the highest IQ (103.09), followed in descending order by the other three groups (IQs = 99.34, 98.28, 97.14). The relationship between IQ and religious belief is highly significant (F (3, 14273) = 78.0381, p < .00001).
2.2. (2) Lower percentages holding religious beliefs among intelligence elites compared with the general population
In corroboration of these studies finding negative correlations between intelligence and religious belief is evidence comparing the percentages of religious believers among intelligence elites compared with the general population. This was shown as early as 1921 in a survey of the religious beliefs of eminent American scientists and scholars that reported that 39% stated that they believed in God (with a range of 48% among historians to 24% among psychologists) (Leuba, 1921). It was reported by Roe (1965) that among a group of 64 eminent scientists, 61 were indifferent to religion, leaving approximately 4.8% as religious believers. These are much lower than the percentage religious believers in the population among whom 95.5% in the United States stated that they believed in God in a 1948 Gallup Poll (Argyle, 1958). In the 1990s a study of members of the American National Academy of Sciences reported that 7% believed in the existence of God, as compared with approximately 90% found in a poll of the general population (Larsen & Witham, 1998). In Britain, it has been reported that 3.3% of Fellows of the Royal Society believed in the existence of God, while 78.8% did not believe (the remainder being undecided) (Dawkins, 2006). At the same time a poll showed that 68.5% of the general population believed in the existence of God.

Life, don't talk to me about life - Marvin the Paranoid Android
"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.

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RAZD
Member (Idle past 1376 days)
Posts: 20714
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004


(1)
Message 6 of 22 (744096)
12-08-2014 9:00 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Percy
12-08-2014 7:46 AM


There's no text and no references, just a number of charts indicating an inverse correlation between religious belief and IQ, e.g.:
I did a quick search and got:
http://www.godandscience.org/apologetics/religion_vs_iq.html
quote:
The animated figure to the right shows the correlation of religion vs. IQ along side the correlation of GDP per capita vs. IQ.3 Since the slopes of the two curves are virtually identical, one would be hard pressed to claim that one factor or another was actually responsible for the prevalence of religion around the world. By the way, there is an outlier country in all this - the United States. People from the U.S. rate religion as being very important, although they have one of the highest IQ's. However, they also have the highest GDP per capita, which seems to be a more significant factor influencing IQ than religious involvement. In general, one could speculate that those who have a full belly would be less likely to consider their need for God. Why does the United States buck that trend, even though it was founded with a secular form of government? That's another story...
Page Not Found - The Skeptic Tank
quote:
Paraphrased and summarized from The Effect of Intelligence on Religious Faith, Burnham P. Beckwith, Free Inquiry, Spring 1986:
1. Thomas Howells, 1927
Study of 461 students showed religiously conversative students "are, in general, relatively inferior in intellectual ability."
2. Hilding Carlsojn, 1933
Study of 215 students showed that "there is a tendency for the more intelligent undergraduate to be sympathetic toward ... atheism."
3. Abraham Franzblau, 1934
Confirming Howells and Carlson, tested 354 Jewish children, 10-16. Negative correlation between religiosity and Terman intelligence test.
4. Thomas Symington, 1935
Tested 400 young people in colleges and church groups. He reported, "there is a constant positive relation in all the groups between liberal religious thinking and mental ability...There is also a constant positive relation between liberal scores and intelligence..."
5. Vernon Jones, 1938
Tested 381 stydents, concluding "a slight tendency for intelligence and liberal attitudes to go together."
6. A. R. Gilliland, 1940
At variance with all other studies, found "little or no relationship between intelligence and attitude toward god."
7. Donald Gragg, 1942
Reported an inverse correlation between 100 ACE freshman test scores and Thurstone "reality of god" scores.
8. Brown and Love, 1951
At U. of Denver, tested 613 male and female students. Mean test scores of non-believers = 119, believers = 100. Percentile NBs = 80, BBs = 50. Their findings "strongly corroborate those of Howells."
9. Michael Argyle, 1958
Concluded that "although intelligent children grasp religious concepts earlier, they are also the first to doubt the truth of religion, and intelligent students are much less likely to accept orthodox beliefs."
10. Jeffrey Hadden, 1963
Found no correlation between intelligence and grades. This was an anomalous finding, since GPA corresponds closely with intelligence. Other factors may have influenced the results at the U. of Wisconsin.
11. Young, Dustin and Holtzman, 1966
Average religiosity decreased as GPA rose.
12. James Trent, 1967
Polled 1400 college seniors. Found little difference, but high-ability students in his sample group were over-represented.
13. C. Plant and E. Minium, 1967
The more intelligent students were less religious, both before entering college and after 2 years of college.
14. Robert Wuthnow, 1978
Of 532 students, 37% of christians, 58% of apostates, and 53 percent of non-religious scored above average on SATs.
15. Hastings and Hoge, 1967, 1974
Polled 200 college students and found no significant correlations.
16. Norman Poythress, 1975
Mean SATs for strongly antireligious (1148), moderately anti-religious (1119), slightly antireligious (1108), and religious (1022).
17. Wiebe and Fleck, 1980
Studied 158 male and female Canadian university students. The reported "nonreligious S's tended to be strongly intelligent" and "more intelligent than religious S's.
Looks to me like there may be a number of factors that muddy the correlations, like income and education, but that there might be a small tendency.
One of the charts in your link for instance:
Would have more to do with education than IQ.
Wikipedia also has an article on it
quote:
A widely researched index or classification of intelligence among scientists is Intelligence Quotient (I.Q.). I.Q. is a summary index, calculated by testing individuals' abilities in a variety of tasks and producing a composite score to represent overall ability, e.g., Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale. It is used to predict educational outcomes and other variables of interest.
Others have attempted to measure intelligence indirectly by looking at individuals' or group's educational attainment, although this risks bias from other demographic factors, such as age, income, gender and cultural background, all of which can affect educational attainment.[8]
Differences in educational attainment
by religious groups in the U.S., 2001 data.
Dissatisfaction with traditional IQ tests has led to the development of alternative theories. In 1983, Howard Gardner proposed the theory of multiple intelligences, which broadens the conventional definition of intelligence, since the cognitive or mental capacity of an individual logically includes all forms of mental qualities, not simply the ones most transparent to standardized I.Q. tests. The categories of intelligences Gardner proposes are logical, linguistic, spatial, musical, kinesthetic, naturalist, intrapersonal and interpersonal intelligences.[10]
In a 2013 meta-analysis, led by Professor Miron Zuckerman, of 63 scientific studies about IQ and religiosity, a negative relation between intelligence and religiosity was found in 53, and a positive relation in the remaining ten. Controlling for other factors, they can only confidently show strong negative correlation between intelligence and religiosity among American Protestants.[1][2]
Nyborg also co-authored a study with Richard Lynn, emeritus professor of psychology at the University of Ulster, which compared religious belief and average national IQs in 137 countries.[11] The study analysed the issue from several viewpoints. Firstly, using data from a U.S. study of 6,825 adolescents, the authors found that atheists scored 6 IQ points higher than non-atheists.
Secondly, the authors investigated the link between religiosity and intelligence on a country level. Among the sample of 137 countries, only 23 (17%) had more than 20% of atheists, which constituted virtually all... higher IQ countries. The authors reported a correlation of 0.60 between atheism rates and level of intelligence, which was determined to be highly statistically significant.[11]
The relationship between countries' belief in a god
and average Intelligence Quotient, measured by
Lynn, Harvey & Nyborg.[11]

Now my impression is that the first graph is self selecting rather than a measure of intelligence -- the more religious a person is the less they think higher education is valuable.
The second graph would appear to show a threshold (~90) below which there are strong religious beliefs and above which the results are all over the map.
Of course one of the problems with IQ tests is that they correlate with education -- you can change your IQ with education, and not being able to fully understand the questions impacts you negatively. IQ tests also show cultural biases.
Is this believable? Many religious people are obviously very intelligent (Stephen Meyer, Michael Behe, etc.). On the other hand many of the creationists who come here know very little, but it's a self-selected group. There's an air of the oblivious in these people who enter eagerly into discussions on subjects about which they know little. They seem unaware and even unable to detect or figure out when they don't know something. Maybe that's the mark of an intelligent person - they know when they don't know.
The more you know the more you know how much you don't know?
This tendency is also born out by studies on the confidence of students in passing exams -- the more confident ones scored lower than the less confident ones, IIRC.
Enjoy

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This message is a reply to:
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frako
Member (Idle past 276 days)
Posts: 2932
From: slovenija
Joined: 09-04-2010


Message 7 of 22 (744117)
12-08-2014 10:32 AM


My guess is its because they don't use their brains because they don't have to, they know all the answers god did it and that it, or they never had access to proper education, a big part of intelligence is logical thinking you train that by doing maths. So their brains don't develop fully.

Christianity, One woman's lie about an affair that got seriously out of hand
What are the Christians gonna do to me ..... Forgive me, good luck with that.

  
nwr
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Posts: 6407
From: Geneva, Illinois
Joined: 08-08-2005
Member Rating: 4.7


(4)
Message 8 of 22 (744194)
12-08-2014 7:08 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Percy
12-08-2014 7:46 AM


Is this believable?
Yes, it is believable. But that's not the same as saying that it's true.
It might even be that in a theocracy, it is the other way around. In a theocracy, the intelligent are better able to see that they can do better by becoming more religious.
So I'm suggesting that it may depend on social structure.

Fundamentalism - the anti-American, anti-Christian branch of American Christianity

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Big_Al35
Member (Idle past 770 days)
Posts: 389
Joined: 06-02-2010


Message 9 of 22 (749742)
02-08-2015 8:33 AM


It is interesting to note that so much emphasis here is placed on intelligence. Perhaps you have never heard the following famous quote;
"Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence.
Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent.
Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.
Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts.
Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent"

Replies to this message:
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Tangle
Member
Posts: 9470
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 6.0


Message 10 of 22 (749747)
02-08-2015 9:27 AM
Reply to: Message 9 by Big_Al35
02-08-2015 8:33 AM


Big Al
It is interesting to note that so much emphasis here is placed on intelligence. Perhaps you have never heard the following famous quote;
"Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence.
Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent.
Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.
Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts.
Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent"
Well whoever wrote that knew nothing about particle physics - or even software development.

Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif.
Life, don't talk to me about life - Marvin the Paranoid Android
"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 9 by Big_Al35, posted 02-08-2015 8:33 AM Big_Al35 has replied

Replies to this message:
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Pressie
Member
Posts: 2103
From: Pretoria, SA
Joined: 06-18-2010


Message 11 of 22 (749748)
02-08-2015 9:43 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Percy
12-08-2014 7:46 AM


To me (in my limited experience in geology of more than 20 years), it basically comes down to:
The higher the education in geology, the lower the beliefs in Gods.
The longer a person works in geology (whether in geological research organisations or for mining companies, etc.); the lower the percentage of people believing in the Supernatural.
Regardless of intelligence.
Edited by Pressie, : No reason given.

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Big_Al35
Member (Idle past 770 days)
Posts: 389
Joined: 06-02-2010


Message 12 of 22 (749749)
02-08-2015 11:50 AM
Reply to: Message 10 by Tangle
02-08-2015 9:27 AM


Tangle writes:
Well whoever wrote that knew nothing about particle physics - or even software development.
Not sure what you mean but let's take each one of those in turn;
1) Particle physics eg that which is studied at LHC requires work that is done on the back of hundreds of other peoples efforts.
2) Software Development is largely an intellectual pursuit...but is it success? They aren't famous on the whole, they don't get much recognition for their work and often they get paid badly.
I should know as I used to be a badly paid software professional.

This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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Tangle
Member
Posts: 9470
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 6.0


Message 13 of 22 (749758)
02-08-2015 12:41 PM
Reply to: Message 12 by Big_Al35
02-08-2015 11:50 AM


BigAl writes:
Not sure what you mean but let's take each one of those in turn;
1) Particle physics eg that which is studied at LHC requires work that is done on the back of hundreds of other peoples efforts.
I can tell you with 100% certainty that no matter how long I persisted in trying to build the LHC or even understand the physics that it's testing, I would never, ever, achieve either.
2) Software Development is largely an intellectual pursuit...but is it success? They aren't famous on the whole, they don't get much recognition for their work and often they get paid badly.
Software development is one of those tasks you can throw 50 people at and never get it done or one really talented guy and have it next week. Which I'm sure you know.

Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif.
Life, don't talk to me about life - Marvin the Paranoid Android
"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 12 by Big_Al35, posted 02-08-2015 11:50 AM Big_Al35 has not replied

  
ringo
Member (Idle past 382 days)
Posts: 20940
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005


Message 14 of 22 (749781)
02-08-2015 2:09 PM
Reply to: Message 12 by Big_Al35
02-08-2015 11:50 AM


Big_al35 writes:
Particle physics eg that which is studied at LHC requires work that is done on the back of hundreds of other peoples efforts.
Good Will Hunting. The guy who sweeps the floor is smarter than the guy who writes the paper on large hadrons.

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Percy
Member
Posts: 22280
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 5.0


Message 15 of 22 (749823)
02-09-2015 10:01 AM
Reply to: Message 12 by Big_Al35
02-08-2015 11:50 AM


Big_Al35 writes:
2) Software Development is largely an intellectual pursuit...but is it success? They aren't famous on the whole, they don't get much recognition for their work and often they get paid badly.
I want to correct any impression that software engineers are underpaid. This is from a job listing for a senior Java developer, and it's fairly typical:
My son just accepted an entry level software engineering position right out of school and he's making much, much less, but he doesn't know anything yet, so maybe that's the kind of underpaid situation you had in mind.
--Percy

This message is a reply to:
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