I am still a dilettante, so I can only suggest a few sites showing the self-awareness of some neurodivergent people - hoping that it may stimulate your reflections.
A good introductory page is:
while the best site for starters is apparently
the best pages I have found so far are:
This blog links to several others, quite interesting ones, but I would like to focus now on the psychiatric conditions usually encompassed in the "neurodiversity" definition.
- Autism Spectrum Disorder (including Asperger's Syndrome);
- AD(H)D [Attention Deficit Disorder (often with Hyperactivity)];
- Tourette Syndrome;
- Bipolar disorders.
A cursory introduction to these conditions can be found here:
About the efforts to build a neurodiversity theology, I have found that it is easier to find books about these conditions, especially written by Christian authors, than a synthesis on neurodiversity.
Let's begin with the books I am going to read (I cite the English edition):
- Autism and Sprituality / By Olga Bogdashina: it is more a book on psychology of religion, than a theological book, but it seems promising;
- Confessions of an Autistic Theologian: Doing Theology in Pictures-A Contextual, Liberation Theology for Humans on the Autism Spectrum / By Daniel Aaron Salomon ; Dr. Tammy Berberi Ph. D.: the first author advocates for neurodiversity and ecology, so I think you'll love him.
Other books I have found through a web search, but I am not going to read now, are:
I have also found this PDF, which is full of good advice for an autism-friendly church:
This is less detailed, but tailored for mosques:
Synagogues and other places of worship can easily adapt these suggestions.
I have also searched for "theology autism", "theology dyspraxia", etc.; some interesting results arose from "theology dyscalculia" and "theology dyslexia", since some Christian theologians compared our endeavors to understand God's nature to the dyscalculic and dyslexic people's efforts at numeracy and literacy.
My judgement of these attempts is ambiguous; on one hand, they warrant for Revelation as the only alternative to apophatic theology; on the other hand, they assume that these conditions are pure disabilities, and the effects of the primeval (Adam and Eve's) sin.
This is all the more troubling as there is still a debate (mostly resolved in the negative nowdays) about whether disability is the reward for sin.
In any case, they do not comprise a "theology of neurodiversity" yet - the idea that neurodivergent people may have an unique and valuable viewpoint towards God and His creation has not dawned on these authors.
Dyslexia is also intriguing because the Hebrew Bible says that, when "I am that I am" (Exodus 3:14) bade Moses to go unto Pharaoh and bring forth the Children of Israel out of Egypt (Exodus 3:6-10), Moses objected that he was "slow (lit. "heavy") of speech and slow of tongue" (Exodus 4:10), and eventually God accomodated for his "heaviness/slowness of speech" by mandating his brother Aaron to become his spokesman (Exodus 4:14-17).
Language disorders are not just the hallmark of dyslexia - even Aspies (people with Autistic Spectrum Disorder) speak in a peculiar way, and Aspies may need the help of a neurotypical to organize their daily tasks.
While in the Hebrew Bible brothers often quarrel at each other (see Jacob and Esau, Joseph and his brethren, and so on), Moses and Aaron get along remarkably well, and even though serious conflicts arise between them (the Golden Calf [Exodus 32], when Aaron and Miriam complained about Moses' wife [Numbers 12]), these brothers manage to compose them well. They could be a good role model for the relationship between neurotypical and neurodivergent people.
A Jewish boy with dyslexia spoke about Moses' and his own condition at his Bar Mitzwah:
Searching for "theology ADHD" gives quite interesting results:
- http://www.directionjournal.org/39/2/adhd-culture-emerging-technologies-and.html - ADHD as a way of resistance;
- http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/15228960802515634?journalCode=wrdh20 - Does Apostle Peter have ADHD? What would it imply for Christians?
Searching for "theology bipolar" gives these interesting results:
Many more resources can be found searching for a "theology of disability", but adapting them to the neurodiversity paradigm may not be easy.
Some references can be found here:
and especially here:
This bibliography may be updated over time. Thanks for your time.
Raffaele Yona Ladu
Ebre* umanista gendervague
Soci* di Autistic Self-Advocacy Network