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So . . . Augustine Was Right!

crying%20baby.jpgThis should come as no surprise to anyone who has ever been a parent, or who is around babies and infants.

Our kids sin very early in life and they are very good at it.

According to a recent article in the Telegraph (Click here: Babies not as innocent as they pretend | Science | Earth | Telegraph),

"Whether lying about raiding the biscuit tin or denying they broke a toy, all children try to mislead their parents at some time. Yet it now appears that babies learn to deceive from a far younger age than anyone previously suspected.

Behavioural experts have found that infants begin to lie from as young as six months. Simple fibs help to train them for more complex deceptions in later life.  Until now, psychologists had thought the developing brains were not capable of the difficult art of lying until four years old.  Following studies of more than 50 children and interviews with parents, Dr Vasudevi Reddy, of the University of Portsmouth's psychology department, says she has identified seven categories of deception used between six months and three-years-old.

Infants quickly learnt that using tactics such as fake crying and pretend laughing could win them attention. By eight months, more difficult deceptions became apparent, such as concealing forbidden activities or trying to distract parents' attention. By the age of two, toddlers could use far more devious techniques, such as bluffing when threatened with a punishment. Dr Reddy said: `Fake crying is one of the earliest forms of deception to emerge, and infants use it to get attention even though nothing is wrong. You can tell, as they will then pause while they wait to hear if their mother is responding, before crying again.'"

As Augustine tells us in his famous Confessions, babies only appear to be innocent because they are physically unable to sin.  This study sure seems to confirm that.


Reader Comments (3)

Great Post. Isn't Augustine also the one who stated as a sort of proof of a baby's sin nature the fact that they so often cried and/or screamed when being baptized?
July 6, 2007 | Unregistered Commentermatt holst
...and didn't he say that our vision works due to light beams that come out of our eyeballs...or was that an augustinian detractor?


zrim, a resigned augustinian-calvinist wondering if even the best of us can get some inconsequential things pretty wrong.
July 7, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterzrim
No wonder WC Fields never liked them.
July 11, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterChris Sherman

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