Just a topic that is close to my heart. And Temple explains it in such an entertaining way.
She’s really amazing. I recall her from some of her videos on animal behaviors and slaughterhouses. She’s not an animal rights advocate per se, but she worked to make the processing of these sentient creatures more humane. Her extraordinary talents seem to give her insights and a sentience that many do in her field not have. Her “feeling” for animals lead to more humane treatment of them. I don’t support slaughterhouses, but I do support any effort to make what is an exisiting fact of life (that humans eat pigs and cattle) more humane.
But it has been far from easy for her. There is also another side to the coin. She has been very lucky to have her physics teacher, who tirelessly set out to stimulate her great gift without getting upset or alienated by her tantrums and panic attacks; because that is the price she had to pay for that gift. People like that are hard to find; most people cannot cope with that.
For somebody on the spectrum, social interactions are a minefield. People often assume that everybody sees the world in a similar way as they do. But somebody on the spectrum sees the world in a way that is not within other people’s realm of experience. People judge them for what they do not understand. Similarly, somebody with AS doesn’t understand indirect hints, bodylanguage, etc. Sure, they pick up on those signs but don’t understand what they mean and whatever they imagine is never what is being conveyed. So it leads to a lot of confusion and anxiety that is sometimes very hard to overcome.
Thanks, Ayya Vimala, for addressing this topic!
AS is fairly common among monastics and serious dhamma practitioners, and it’s important for people to be aware of it.