What do we think of this !? 
It can explain why Melanesian frog worship is on a par with the superstitions of christianity and other religions. 
"Belief in gods is part of human nature" ---an Oxford study suggests
Some brief extracts:
The project involved 57 academics in 20 countries around the world, and spanned disciplines including anthropology, psychology, and philosophy.
It wanted to establish whether belief in divine beings and an afterlife were ideas simply learned from society or integral to human nature.
Professor Roger Trigg from Oxford said the research showed that religion was “not just something for a peculiar few to do on Sundays instead of playing golf”.
“We have gathered a body of evidence that suggests that religion is a common fact of human nature across different societies. This suggests that attempts to suppress religion are likely to be short-lived because human thought seems to be rooted to religious concepts, like the existence of supernatural agents or gods, and the possibility of an afterlife or pre-life.”
Dr Justin Barrett, from the University of Oxford’s Centre for Anthropology and Mind, who directed the project, said faith may persist in diverse cultures across the world because people who share the bonds of religion “might be more likely to cooperate as societies . . . Interestingly, we found that religion is less likely to thrive in populations living in cities in developed nations where there is already a strong social support network.”

Tags: Origins of religion

Views: 397

Replies to This Discussion

Belief in gods is the grease that lubricated the slippery slope leading to to conceptual breakdown!


I believe that city folk are even more predisposed to religion and belief in God than village folk.This is probably due to the fact that city folk feel more insecure and uncertain.Its all down to that basically.



Not in the US, at least.  Small towns in America are much more religious than big cities.
It could be different in India, I guess.  The only studies I've seen were done in North America or Europe.


In theory greater urbanization means better education and hence that should lead to lesser interest in God and religion and religious beliefs and rituals.But that is only in theory.In reality things don't really pan out that way at all.




Why does it seem that way, in India?  You mentioned the added stress and worries of living in a faster-paced urban environment, but the same doesn't seem to be the case, here in America.  What's different about Indian cities?  Have you got any other thoughts on the subject?


Its difficult to explain.It probably has to do with clinging on to old customs and traditions.We in India seem to produce so called "educated" people in their millions.But this kind of education doesn't seem to make much of a difference to their way of thinking or their way of life.Their outlook on life doesn't seem to change much and hence this Urban--rural effect does not really change things here--at least not much.



Hmm, are you guys getting more technical training, rather than a broad-based college education?  What tends to make more educated people less religious is all of the secondary classes ... stuff like the philosophy classes, world history, literature ... things that make people look at things from a different perspective than the one they were raised with.
Joseph, you said, "...the added stress and worries of living in a faster-paced urban environment, but the same doesn't seem to be the case, here in America." I recently saw a TV program about urbanization which claimed that when the size of a city doubled, many demographics went up 15% such as disease, crime, income, the outlay for police, and even the pace of walking. This seems to be a function of city scale.
What about religiosity, though?  That seems to move inversely with city size, in the studies I've seen.

Seems like a little bit of confirmation bias going on, and the idea is not exactly a new one.  I've always maintained a god belief derives mostly from the fact that, a) we don't know how stuff works, and b) we're scared of death.

Add to that the fact that we like life as easy as possible, and that it's nice to feel part of an inclusive group, and we a) suppress our ignorance by pretending we know the answers, and b) suppress our fear by pretending death isn't going to happen ... then we just hang around a bunch of others who feel the same way to get that warm, fuzzy feeling of being one of a precious few who've got it right.

For the most part, humans are insecure, fearful and ignorant, and many are content to just put a plaster over those problems with religion rather than treat the underlying injuries with rationality.

Brazil is the biggest "catholic" country in the world and it's a place where injustice is spread out and it's also one of the most corrupted countries in the world. If the belief in these superstions would bring this marvelous world that the research says, wouldn't Brazil be one of the best countries to live in?? And it's far from being...




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