What do you all do for a living and do you think that your experiences gained in your occupation bring something to discussions here at EvC?
I am a grocery clerk.
I suppose that some of the anecdotal stories of my customers and job experiences bring a bit of humor to the board...not to mention my incessant whining about work and fairness...but I suspect the latter brings more irritation here than anything else.
So you are a therapist, eh Larni? Tell me a bit about your background.... ;)
I'm an electrical engineer working as RF systems engineer for NASA's polar satellite tracking stations.
Certainly my job has taught me to troubleshoot problems using evidence and not give in to mere speculation. However, it is my experience with the evangelical fundamentalist Christian community as a deacon in an Assembly of God church, that gives me a unique perspective in the EVC debate.
I used to be an attorney, but I'm much better now. Phillip Johnson notwithstanding, training in the law can help one form cogent arguments and analyse the strengths and weaknesses of the arguments of others. It also honed my writing skills.Those who would sacrifice an essential liberty for a temporary security will lose both, and deserve neither. -- Benjamin Franklin
We see monsters where science shows us windmills. -- Phat
Well, I used to be a horse trainer and riding instructor (I have a bachelor's in Equestrian Studies) but then I changed careers.
I moved into specialty food retail and have done cashier, floor sales, buying, professional tasting, instruction and training, merchandising and consulting.
I currently do all of these things for a small specialty grocery in a small New England town with a lot of tourist activity.
My background in science gained through my formal education laid the groundwork for much of my participation here, interest-wise. Intro to Biology 101 was a difficult course but I loved it (and earned one of only two A's given in the class :)), but there was another course that was highly influential called The Nature of Scientific Inquiry. I really warmed to the whole idea of how science operated and how one could recognize and arm oneself against fallacies and flaws in thinking, and recognize it in other places. I saw the course as instruction on how to think effectively.
I also married a person who eventually became a scientist (a Cognitive Psychologist), so his influence is obviously significant.
So, I suppose my career doesn't affect my participation here all that much, other than I do very much enjoy teaching, which I suppose debate can be seen to incorporate some of.
So you are a therapist, eh Larni? Tell me a bit about your background....
Well I've been a therapist for about 4 years now, coming from a back groud of psychology but I moved into support work with young adults Autism and Asperger's Syndrome.
It was then that I began to see that many of the guys I worked with were suffering from significant levels of anxiety and had an array of inappropriate beliefs that were enabled by their particular disorder.
That got me into actual mental health (working in an acute admissions ward) and contact with delusional individuals again pointed to ones beliefs about the nature of reality as being maintainance factors in various psychological disorders.
From there I kind of slid in cbt because it focusses on our beliefs and the effect on our functioning the beliefs have.
I see what we believe as tremendously important to how we approach the world: many, many patients I have had have the most amazing beliefs that affect their whole life.
One incidence of this is the individual fearing thunder. Not afraid of lightning, but thunder. The belief? Thunderbolts can hit you if it is thundering.
When the belief was disabused i.e. educating the patient about the nature of thunder and lightning and the effect our negative predictions will have on us, the client was able to recognise the learnt reaction triggered by beliefs aboout reality that were unfounded.
Thats why I get on my high horse about evidence and not accepting things only because we (in our heart) believe them to be true.
The patient in question believed that thunderbolts (not lightning, mind) occured when clouds collided. The patient believed it with all of his being and would not budge from that belief inspite of mounting evidence for ages.
I can't help but see parallels with religion, buts that not for here.
I work in production at a medical journal. Editing photographs of what happens to the human genitals when you have herpes on top of HIV, and there's nothing in your immune system holding back the herpes, has given me an almost superhuman ability to crack deadpan jokes on things that make my stomach turn.
How I apply this to the forum should be obvious.
"I know some of you are going to say 'I did look it up, and that's not true.' That's 'cause you looked it up in a book. Next time, look it up in your gut." -Stephen Colbert