[ExI] atheists declare religions as scams.

Stefano Vaj stefano.vaj at gmail.com
Tue Feb 1 16:23:18 UTC 2011

On 1 February 2011 14:12, Ben Zaiboc <bbenzai at yahoo.com> wrote:
> On 31 January 2011 01:31, Keith Henson <hkeithhenson at gmail.com> wrote:
>> I think atheists would be much better off to try to understand why (in
>> an evolutionary sense) humans have religions at all.
> I thought the idea that our brains are adapted to err on the side of false positives when attributing agency to events was enough of an explanation.

There again, if I am angry with my car because it does not want to
start, I am not founding a religion, I am more likely to kick it and
call a mechanic.

Moreover, there are religious beliefs which have nothing to do with
attributing agency.

Basically, "re-ligio" in Latin simply means a common set of ideas and
narratives that binds together a group. In this sense, its
evolutionary significance for a cultural being would seem obvious. But
there is no requirement  whatsoever that such ideas or narratives
include or postulate a metaphysical worldview.

In fact, I suspect that most of the times, most of the places in human
history they did not, and yet could serve very well whatever
evolutionary added value religions may deliver.

Stefano Vaj

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