“The Paleolithic paradigm” is the intellectual mold gripping the human mind since at least 70,000 B.C. It is the belief that certain rituals (actions or words) will influence a deity, and because of the influence, that deity will alter the outcome of events on planet Earth. Don’t nearly all American athletes invoke God for victory? Maybe not, but more than enough athletes thank Jesus for victory (on television, thus pounding those mirror neurons of the young audience watching).  

If you believe in a Paleolithic god, you are part of America’s current intellectual dilemma. There is simply zero evidence that any human ritual influences some deity and that deity then alters the outcome of earthly events, like praying for a presidential victory. The intellectual dilemma: when will the U.S. be rational?

We are in the Paleolithic paradigm; but if we can get enough Americans to understand why they have the bounded orthodoxy they do, we might get rid of religion in 200 years. Don’t hold your breath, because there is fear in the hearts of most Americans about some afterlife. Well, why not, because that is what they have been taught up through high school, without any alternatives. Maybe 500 years?

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Comment by Lillie on September 17, 2012 at 11:14pm

I agree.  Our hope lies with our young people and they are not afraid to speak out.

Comment by Jerry Wesner on September 13, 2012 at 3:26pm

Several years ago the Humanist Society of New Mexico, of which I'm a member, wanted to produce a bumper sticker to identify ourselves.  We offered slogans; the winner was "Nothing Fails Like Prayer."  But we never made them; nobody in the group would risk putting one on their car.  Also, when I was teaching at a large public high school I certainly couldn't express non-theistic positions, but I could occasionally raise a question, or an eyebrow, at some religious ideas.  I found that many students were questioning the standard line.



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