"How can God exist if I can't see him?" asked Joey, the fourth-grade son of my high school religion teacher. Mrs. Botz, his mother, replied, "God is always there Joey. You can't see him, but he's there." Joey replied, "No, He isn't! If I can't see him, then he can't be there. Why do you lie to me about Him?".
On a topic such as religion or about spiritual means, this would be some of the conversing that could possibly take place with an autistic child. Joey Botz, Mrs. Mary Beth Botz's son, has autism. Since she is a religion teacher, and has very strong religious stances, trying to explain God to Joey isn't the easiest or most accomplishing thing to do.
Autism is disorder that severely impairs development of a person's ability to communicate, interact with other people, and maintain normal contact with the outside world. It is often referred to as a spectrum disorder, a disorder in which symptoms can occur in any combination and with varying degrees of severity.
Autistic children fail to develop normal relationships with their parents, brothers or sisters, and other children. They seem to have no sense of knowledge of other people's feelings and often do not make friends. Autistic children may also demonstrate echolalia, which means they mechanically repeat words or phrases that other people say. About 75 percent of autistic children are classified as having mental retardation, meaning that they score well below average on a standard test of intelligence and that they have a significantly impaired ability to cope with common life demands.
This is the reason Joey cannot understand the concept of God. His brain does not let him look outside of the material and physical world we live in. Not only does Joey have a hard time understanding God, but also emotions, such as love. He cannot actually touch love or see love as a thing so it doesn't make sense in his eyes. .
Scientists once regarded autism as a psychological disorder caused by traumatic experiences that forced a child to retreat into a world of fantasy.