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Myth #1 Sheep are Dumb – ARE SHEEP STUPID?

Myth #1 Sheep are Dumb – ARE SHEEP STUPID?

‘Although I do not want to over-personify sheep, I found an interesting study about their characteristics. In an article by Susan Schoenian, regarding sheep behavior, she writes:

“Over the years, sheep have acquired a reputation for being stupid. This is because of their strong flocking and following instinct and lack of individual initiative. Their docile and non-aggressive behavior adds to this belief. But, there is a growing body of evidence to suggest that this is not the case. Sheep may possess some smarts. It turns out that sheep, ridiculed for an unquestioning herd mentality, possess a sharp sense of individuality and can recognize the faces of at least ten people and fifty other sheep for two years or more. Scientists at the Babraham Institute in Cambridge also discovered that sheep react to facial expressions and, like humans, prefer a smile to a grimace. Further studies reinforce the notion that sheep are more sophisticated in their thinking than previously believed, showing that sheep mourn absent individuals and distinguish one sheep’s bleating from another and form friendships with one another. Scientists claim that such findings are increasingly challenging the belief that farmyard animals, including sheep, have no sense of self” (Sheep 201, A Beginners Guide to Raising Sheep).

It seems unlikely that ‘stupid’ sheep can recognize faces, react to facial expressions, prefer smiles, mourn absent individuals, and distinguish between the vocalizations (vibrations) made by people and other sheep. Yet, according to the study cited above, they can. Certainly, sheep do not have the same capacity to reason as humans do. Our ability to reason is what distinguishes us from all other life forms on God’s green earth. Intriguingly, the acceptance found in a leader’s face and the familiarities of his voice are important characteristics in spiritual leadership. Conventional commentary mentions that Jesus commonly compared his ministry to the sheep-shepherd relationship because herding a flock was so common during the first century. Do you think that Jesus might have known what behavioral scientists would discover in the 21st Century? Could our newfound insights be the underlying reason why Jesus chose the sheep-shepherd relationship to illustrate basic leadership principles?’ [reprinted from “Big Data @ Church – Calculating the Will of God”, Chapter 4]

The sheep respond to the environmental cues received from those around them and act accordingly. Energetic, positive, and smiling shepherds resonate the I AM within their audience. As a result, people return to hear more. Assuming sheep are smart is a great place to start. Introducing big data technology to the flock reveals how smart they are.

So if church leaders expend the time to explore big data technology within a spiritual community — learn its insights — the church can transform into a dimension never quantified before.

This I know for sure. RESPOND : WDYT [what do you think]

Michael —  Tweet @TheTheoSphere

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