Thursday 27 June 2019

Does Neurodiversity mean never having to say you're sorry?

Yesterday I posted this admittedly provocative question on Twitter:
Does Neurodiversity mean never having to say you’re sorry?A World Cafe topic I suggested for the Genius Within may sound facetious but takes some unpacking. Cd lead to lively discussion


What follows is a self-indulgent tour around my brain. 

To jump to more philosophical reflections, jump to 

So, finally! 

Oh, you're still here ...

Being impulsive*, I wasn't quite sure what I meant.
And being oppositional, I was somewhat conscious that I was being provocative and about to anger people left, right and centre.

So, I'm sorry.

OTOH, being Neurodivergent, I could rephrase that as :
Being a creative risk-taking brainstormer, I put it "out there" being confident that interesting results always follow if you make a bold move.
Being an innate devotee of the Socratic method (was Socrates an early Aspie?) I am more interested in the pursuit of truth than popularity,

So I'm not really sorry.

I have just learned to "mask" for the sake of not being totally ostracized.

And besides, I'm actually Autistic in the original etymological meaning of the word, i.e. absorbed in myself and my inner processes. Not to be mistaken for the hashtagged #ActuallyAutistic, which I have come to dislike for reasons explained earlier in this blog

Then again, I am sorry ...

because I know I bore people with my single-mindedness about my inner processes, and I am always ... well, sometimes ... apologizing and asking - "Am I boring you? Please stop me if I'm going on too much"

But then I'm not really sorry, 

because if I wasn't a creative and oppositional seeker of truth in the teeth of the conventional wisdom of disability studies in the 90s and its social constructionist fundamentalism I would not have had the determination to forge ahead with the concept of a Neurodiversity Movement, which some of you say has changed your lives.

"For the worse!" I hear some cry.

I'm not sorry about that either. 

It was in the Zeitgeist anyway. I was just the unlucky person who happened to be positioned with the right mindset in the right period of history in the right geographical location in the right academic discipline to channel what was already out there.

So finally!

It's a question that humanity have been debating since recorded history and well before.

Free will vs Determinism

The problems of evil

We're not going to resolve it in 240 chars on Twitter

Not even in a blog post

But it's a fascinating pastime to try.