[extropy-chat] Putting God to Rest

Keith Henson hkhenson at rogers.com
Tue Apr 24 19:27:12 UTC 2007

At 10:06 AM 4/24/2007 -0700, samantha wrote:
>Mike Dougherty wrote:
> > On 4/24/07, Keith Henson <hkhenson at rogers.com> wrote:
> >
> >> The mental mechanisms in brains where religion "resides" and runs was
> >> shaped by evolution going back millions of years.  What manifests as
> >> religions today is the result of these mechanisms.  Now there are two 
> major
> >> choices, the mechanism(s) were selected for something else and happen 
> to be
> >> used by religions, or they were directly evolved for something like
> >> religion.  In either case, because they are so widespread, there must have
> >> been a considerable selection advantage for these mechanisms.
> >
>The alternative is that religion or the thinking and psychological
>patterns that give rise to it are a by product of one or more
>evolutionary advantageous developments.   If this is so and if religion
>in moderns is problematic then it may well take a pretty active
>conscious set of decisions and some energy to counteract this effect in
>oneself.    Certain types of magical thinking, superstition,
>authoritarianism and so on may be roughly defaults in human beings.

That's not an alternative, just a restatement.


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