Jun 5, 2006

What If They Are All Dead?

I remember when I was young, between the ages of 5 and 10 years old, my dad was taking me and an older brother in the pickup truck to go visit a farm. I don’t remember why we were going there or even if it was just one of several stops. We pulled into the drive way. Straight ahead was a traditional style barn and to our right was a house. I remember the day was overcast, and the wind was teasing the trees in ebbs and flows. It triggered scenarios from scary movies and so out of my mouth came the words, “What if they are all dead.”

My brother looked at me and said, “You’re sure morbid.”

That is the end of my memory. I may have asked my brother what morbid meant, but I probably already knew.

I had no wish for those individuals deaths. That would be wrong. I had no intended action in mind. It was relational thinking.

Relational thinking: It feels like an autonomic function. Like breathing.

I was introduced to some one whose last name was Nagel, my mind popped up the word Bagel, then Nosh (because the bakery chain called Bagel Nosh), then the picture of a Hassidic Jew who was Noshing on a bagel. . .

There is no intent or rationale behind this line of thinking. I think Temple Grandon said something like, it is not rational it is relational. Words or concepts with related sounds, images, or associated ideas naturally link together in a stream of consciousness experience in our minds.

The overcast sky and character of the wind as we pulled up triggered associations with television shows and movies. I can see it in my mind, an investigator pulls up to the home of an important witness. It’s TV so the weather is going to foreshadow the bad news that is about to come. The witness is dead. So are the guards. They’re all dead. Whoever did this was a professional. Etc. etc.

So what’ s the point? Relational thinking can create sort of an ADD environment if allowed to run out of control. If you’ve read Temple Grandon’s book Thinking In Pictures, you’ll remember she mentioned that if she didn’t try to control her thinking, her mind would just sort of wander off into a relational thinking world for hours. Hard to be productive in that case.

However, if you are investigating a crime, researching or searching for a solution, relational thinking can cause helpful ideas or even complete solutions to pop into your mind as if by inspiration. The Aspie brain has stored all sorts of details about all sorts of stuff, and hooked this data together by how they relate to each other. When an idea or question is introduced into the mind it triggers other data based on those relational hooks. An Aspie may or may not be aware that this is happening.

I bet Tony Atwood would really know, but my personal guess is that these relational hooks are created as the “normal” function of all brains. Aspies just have a greater access to it. It is part of the Aspie brain’s normal function to be much more aware of there thoughts.

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