The headline of an article in Monday’s Independent newspaper proclaimed: ‘Religious people are less intelligent than atheists, according to analysis of scores of scientific studies stretching back over decades’. As an honours graduate of the University of Aberdeen and a zealous born again Christian, I was intrigued and read on.
It was as I suspected, those high priests of secularism, the psychologists, who were again attacking people of faith by attempting to show that non-believers were more intelligent than believers. Professor Miron Zuckerman and his team from the University of Rochester, in a review of 63 studies, dating back to 1928 have concluded that there is “a reliable negative correlation between intelligence and religiosity”.
Journalist, Rob Williams explains that the psychologists, “defined intelligence as the ‘ability to reason, plan, solve problems, think abstractly, comprehend complex ideas, learn quickly, and learn from experience’.......religiosity is defined by the psychologists as involvement in some (or all) facets of religion......other factors - such as gender or education - did not make any difference to the correlation between intelligence and religious belief.”
What most people of faith might find objectionable is the arrogant and patronising conclusion of the report which states:"Most extant explanations (of a negative relation) share one central theme —the premise that religious beliefs are irrational, not anchored in science, not testable and, therefore, unappealing to intelligent people who 'know better'."
As a believer, I humbly beg to differ with Professor Zuckerman and his colleagues. It is not as if their research has really uncovered anything that is new or ground breaking.
Writing almost 2,000 years ago to the Christians in Corinth, the Apostle Paul had to deal with the same kind of criticism from the so-called intelligentsia of the day. His response goes straight to the heart of the matter:
“For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written: ‘I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.’ Where is the wise person? Where is the teacher of the law? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe”.
For those of us who believe...........a ‘no brainer’!!