Author Topic: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?  (Read 3182 times)

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Offline arthwollipot

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Re: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?
« Reply #15 on: December 16, 2018, 07:07:27 PM »
Sorry - pet peeve. It's "species", not "specie". The s on the end does not in this case designate that the word is plural. It's a singular noun.

Okay, carry on. Apologies again for the interruption.
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Offline John Albert

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Re: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?
« Reply #16 on: December 16, 2018, 07:50:39 PM »
The “defect” is that our brains cannot distinguish between valid pattern recognition and paradolia, and that without training are not even aware that the problem exists.

At what point do you draw the line between natural limitations and 'defects'?

Having ears that only detect vibrations with frequencies between 20-20,000 Hertz? 
Having eyes that can only detect photons with wavelengths between 400-700 nanometers?
Having a field of vision that's only 120°?
Having hands with only 10 fingers and one opposable thumb on each?
Having only 2 arms and legs?

At least we can train our own brains to mitigate some of our cognitive biases. Nothing short of technological augmentation can be done to correct our sensory and motor abilities.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2018, 04:53:38 AM by John Albert »

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Re: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?
« Reply #17 on: December 16, 2018, 09:44:26 PM »
Sorry - pet peeve. It's "species", not "specie". The s on the end does not in this case designate that the word is plural. It's a singular noun.

Okay, carry on. Apologies again for the interruption.

Is it though?

https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/species

https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/species

http://www.wordreference.com/enfr/species

Offline arthwollipot

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Re: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?
« Reply #18 on: December 16, 2018, 10:21:13 PM »
Sorry - pet peeve. It's "species", not "specie". The s on the end does not in this case designate that the word is plural. It's a singular noun.

Okay, carry on. Apologies again for the interruption.

Is it though?

https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/species

https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/species

http://www.wordreference.com/enfr/species

Yes. The examples given in your first link (Oxford) include the following:

‘Organisms of a particular species all have the same genes but have different alleles.’

‘As in Darwin's theory of natural selection, a species must adjust to survive.’

‘a species of invective at once tough and suave’

‘a political species that is becoming more common, the environmental statesman’

‘a new molecular species’


All use the word species as a singular noun. If you look up specie in the same dictionary, the definition is given as "Money in the form of coins rather than notes."
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Re: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?
« Reply #19 on: December 16, 2018, 10:59:57 PM »
Sorry - pet peeve. It's "species", not "specie". The s on the end does not in this case designate that the word is plural. It's a singular noun.

Okay, carry on. Apologies again for the interruption.

Is it though?

https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/species

https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/species

http://www.wordreference.com/enfr/species

Yes. The examples given in your first link (Oxford) include the following:

‘Organisms of a particular species all have the same genes but have different alleles.’

‘As in Darwin's theory of natural selection, a species must adjust to survive.’

‘a species of invective at once tough and suave’

‘a political species that is becoming more common, the environmental statesman’

‘a new molecular species’


All use the word species as a singular noun. If you look up specie in the same dictionary, the definition is given as "Money in the form of coins rather than notes."

I think I was drunk lol.

Offline arthwollipot

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Re: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?
« Reply #20 on: December 16, 2018, 11:08:51 PM »
Sorry - pet peeve. It's "species", not "specie". The s on the end does not in this case designate that the word is plural. It's a singular noun.

Okay, carry on. Apologies again for the interruption.

Is it though?

https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/species

https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/species

http://www.wordreference.com/enfr/species

Yes. The examples given in your first link (Oxford) include the following:

‘Organisms of a particular species all have the same genes but have different alleles.’

‘As in Darwin's theory of natural selection, a species must adjust to survive.’

‘a species of invective at once tough and suave’

‘a political species that is becoming more common, the environmental statesman’

‘a new molecular species’


All use the word species as a singular noun. If you look up specie in the same dictionary, the definition is given as "Money in the form of coins rather than notes."

I think I was drunk lol.

 ;D

Minor derail. Like I said, it's a pet peeve of mine. Let's get back to the subject.
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Offline John Albert

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Re: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?
« Reply #21 on: December 17, 2018, 06:47:27 AM »
I'll bet secularism has existed along side of religion since the beginning. There was someone going "Naw."

It's true that atheism has existed at least since classical times. In ancient Greece, disbelief in the gods was a capital crime. In ancient Rome, refusal to worship the state deities was considered a form of treason.

The atheism you are describing is not the same atheism as it is understood in modern times. In fact, Christians in Ancient Rome were persecuted for being atheists by rejecting Roman deities.

Granted, the ancient world didn't have such a thing as "secularism" in the sense of "separating religion from politics." That concept is a product of the 18th Century Enlightenment.

But what I'm describing is "atheism" in the sense of "not believing in gods". That philosophical position has existed throughout all of recorded history.

I only brought up the Romans because they had laws against refusing to worship. So their criminal code defined "atheism" such that it also included Christians. That does not alter the fact that there existed some people who did not believe in gods. Those people were atheists, just like today's atheists.


Religion is indeed unifying within a somewhat homogeneous population. Religion brought destruction to external populations whose philosophies were in direct conflict with the invader and competed for the same resources (arable land, material wealth, people's minds, political power etc).

Religion may engender unity within a population, but only among those who don't challenge the group-think. At the same time, it's often detrimental to the freethinking individuals within the society.

So religion would appear to suppress dissent within the social group. Is there any evidence that suppression of dissent once served to enhance the survivability of the species?

Even if so, then it ought to be clear by now that any such advantage does not scale to accommodate an interactive global ecology.


Now on your point about self destructive religions, I was just watching a video clip about an insect, armored ground cricket, that squirts its foul tasting blood to fend off aggressors. There is a hilarious side effect though, the insect becomes attractive food to members of its own specie who cannot resist the smell. They hunt it down and consume it whole. I believe it's on netflix, second episode of season 1 (Africa - narrated by David Attenborough). My argument here is that it's not unreasonable to find both negative and positive effect of traits in nature. I would consider those to be outliers, rather than the norm.

Yes, it's possible for some beneficial traits to have a detrimental downside, and religions are not the only kind of behavior that causes organisms to kill others of their own species.

But unlike the bug's stink-spraying defense, religion offers no protection against nonhuman predators. It only serves to turn human populations against each other, and ostracize some individuals from the population. 

What is the evolutionary benefit to that?

Weigh that against the fact that religion often instigates war, oppression, mass suicide, and other maladaptive behavior. Does religion still look so beneficial to survival? 


By the way, secular states are waging war in the middle east, but that doesn't mean secularism is wrong.

Which specific Middle Eastern secular states are you referring to? Israel? Saudi Arabia? Yemen?

At any rate, secular states do not go to war as a consequence of their secularism per se. They fight over resources, and cultural and ideological differences which (surprise, surprise) usually involve differences of religion.


Religion is abhorrent to us skeptics only because it's the enemy of self actualization.

I find religion abhorrent because the entire endeavor is based on promoting nonsense to manipulate people.

That nonsense will inhibit those manipulated from reaching their full potential, wasting efforts on misleading ideas/concepts styming progress. You are kind of agreeing with me here about the self-actualization thing.

I agree on the self-actualization thing, but I also object to religion on other grounds as well.

"Self-actualization" is just the rarefied pinnacle of Maslow's famous "Hierarchy of Needs."



Religion not only inhibits Self-actualization, but is also harmful on every other level of the pyramid. Religion causes harm to people's Esteem by making them emotionally dependent upon it. Religion alienates some individuals from Love and Belonging when they're persecuted or shunned for dogmatic reasons. By fomenting alienation and animosity among different cultures, religious differences also represent a threat to general Safety, and are frequently used as a premise to withhold Physiological necessities from nonbelievers.


Do you believe this held true for the last 10000, 20000, or 150000 years? Quote: "Religious thought might be proliferating in humans for no better reason than our neuroloplasticity and biochemistry allows us to derive comfort from earning and participating in a shared delusion".

Yes, I do.


I do agree with your point that evolution doesn't necessarily weed out traits unless they're detrimental to life. I also do not prescribe to the notion that natural selection is completely random.

I'm happy that you agree, because the preponderance of evidence also agrees! 


I do not think a trait will make an appearance so strong without some kind of environmental pressure causing an organism/population to adapt. I think laws of nature in place forces evolution phenomena to behave like an expert economist.

I don't get what you're talking about here. Your "expert economist" model reads like a gross misunderstanding of evolutionary theory. The process of evolution does not require any kind of guidance by nebulous "forces of nature." Some behavioral traits can develop even without any express evolutionary purpose. The "strength" of religion as an evolutionary adaptation is not evident, so that part would appear to be circular reasoning.

Just because a lot of people tend to believe unreasonable things and some irrational ideas become culturally ingrained, it does not follow that irrational thought therefore must have some inherent evolutionary benefit. Maybe it's only been marginally detrimental thus far, but just not enough to wipe out our species yet.

Evolution is about the survivability of species, not the propagation of ideology. Some religions may propagate at the expense of competing religions and ideologies, but that alone doesn't constitute evidence that religion is beneficial to the survivability of the human species.


If religion is so widespread within a population, there is a reason for it most likely a non trivial one. There are simply too many religious people.

Every single human on Earth is born with a vermiform appendix hanging off the lower end of their ascending colon. This structure has no apparent biological purpose, and we can live a perfectly healthy life without it. Our appendix is not only unnecessary and useless, but is even potentially life threatening. There's a roughly 1 in 20 chance that it will become infected, requiring emergency removal to prevent the death of the individual.



How can the appendix be such a liability if it's common to all humans? Perhaps some useless and life-threatening things can also be widespread?


The religious feeling is almost instinctual and religious people cannot shake that feeling. I really do think it's biologically ingrained for most individuals.

Why don't you don't believe those kinds of feelings can be cultivated and developed through personal experience? Have you ever known an atheist who went to church and ended up becoming religious? 


Here's a couple of NCBI paper linking religiosity more closely to biology:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3125629/
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12289962
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5646707/

The above articles are indicative of a pattern to which we as skeptics need to pay attention when we are evaluating religiosity.

That first article studies the observation that religious people in modern times are having more offspring. It does not demonstrate the inverse (religion having a biological cause) as you're suggesting. In fact, it tactly assumes that premise right in the first sentence of the discussion: "This paper assumes that there exist genetic differences between individuals that affect their predisposition towards religion." But no evidence is presented to support religion having a biological cause.

The second article is behind a paywall, but by the abstract I can tell that it's just another study of the cultural effect of religiosity on family size.

The third paper also does not present evidence for genetic or biological predispositions of religion. It's a survey of clinical depression in people who identify as religious or spiritual. It claims to have discovered a correlation between "spirituality" and higher genetic disposition for seratonin, dopamine, and oxytocin response. Its conclusion makes no sense though. On one hand it claims a genetic predisposition, then it uses that alleged finding as a basis to recommend "spiritual guidance" as a treatment for the children of depressed patients. But it seems that the researchers are getting their causes and effects mixed up. If the spirituality and neurotransmitter responses are indeed both consequences of the same genetic cause, then how is "spiritual guidance" supposed to help? They haven't proven that spirituality causes higher neurotransmitter response. This kind of circular reasoning is not surprising considering the source; it's from a journal called Clinical Spiritual Practice. Oof!

Sorry I don't find any of these compelling.


Well, we don't particularly know what animals are thinking. A century ago, no one could have imagined...

That's an argument from ignorance.


Ostracizing outsiders is not inconsistent with evolution. For instance, lion pride will not tolerate other lions seen as outsiders. They will aggressively eliminate any competition.

We humans don't generally kill the offspring of other humans because unlike lions, we're a social species. Killing off productive members of our social group is not very beneficial to a social species.


Edits: for phrasing.

« Last Edit: December 17, 2018, 06:49:05 PM by John Albert »

Offline daniel1948

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Re: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?
« Reply #22 on: December 17, 2018, 10:10:04 AM »
My understanding is that the Romans didn’t care whether or not you believed in the gods. They only cared that you perform the required sacrifices, which could be as simple as dropping a pinch of incense onto the fire. And if you were poor, the government would provide the incense. There were people who didn’t believe in the gods, but that wasn’t an issue. It wasn’t until Christianity that belief itself became an issue.
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Offline Rai

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Re: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?
« Reply #23 on: December 18, 2018, 01:32:49 AM »
My understanding is that the Romans didn’t care whether or not you believed in the gods. They only cared that you perform the required sacrifices, which could be as simple as dropping a pinch of incense onto the fire. And if you were poor, the government would provide the incense. There were people who didn’t believe in the gods, but that wasn’t an issue. It wasn’t until Christianity that belief itself became an issue.

Romans wanted everyone to pay at least lip service to the Roman Imperial Cult. That is it. Since state and "Church" were one and the same, you had to show that you won't cause trouble by showing up and participating. Besides that, you could believe in whatever you wished.

Christians never even tried to pretend, plus they were this weird secretive bunch who, apparently, drank human blood and ate human meat at their ceremonies, which was a bit too much even for the Romans.

Offline daniel1948

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Re: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?
« Reply #24 on: December 18, 2018, 10:16:31 AM »
My understanding is that the Romans didn’t care whether or not you believed in the gods. They only cared that you perform the required sacrifices, which could be as simple as dropping a pinch of incense onto the fire. And if you were poor, the government would provide the incense. There were people who didn’t believe in the gods, but that wasn’t an issue. It wasn’t until Christianity that belief itself became an issue.

Romans wanted everyone to pay at least lip service to the Roman Imperial Cult. That is it. Since state and "Church" were one and the same, you had to show that you won't cause trouble by showing up and participating. Besides that, you could believe in whatever you wished.

Christians never even tried to pretend, plus they were this weird secretive bunch who, apparently, drank human blood and ate human meat at their ceremonies, which was a bit too much even for the Romans.

Not to mention that far far more Christians were killed by other Christians in disputes over minor points of dogma than the Romans ever killed. The Roman persecution of Christians was relatively brief. Killings among Christians goes back to the very beginning and never even slowed down until the Church lost political power during the Enlightenment. As early as the Acts of the Apostles, Paul prays for the death of a fellow Christian for failing to turn over all his wealth to the Church. The book says that God struck the man dead, though I think the hand that killed him was probably one of Paul’s henchmen.
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Offline CarbShark

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Re: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?
« Reply #25 on: December 18, 2018, 02:06:35 PM »
Humans are more effective at almost any endeavor when well organized.

Religion is an effective way to organize humans.
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Offline John Albert

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Re: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?
« Reply #26 on: December 18, 2018, 04:29:47 PM »
Humans are more effective at almost any endeavor when well organized.

Religion is an effective way to organize humans.

Agreed, religion is an effective way to organize humans. But so are other political systems like Capitalism, Communism, and Fascism.

Are all political movements inherently beneficial to human survival? Is religion superior to other forms of political organization, vis a vis human survival? 

And is there any biological evidence that the inclination for religion is a direct product of human evolution?

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Re: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?
« Reply #27 on: December 19, 2018, 09:27:39 PM »
Humans are more effective at almost any endeavor when well organized.

Religion is an effective way to organize humans.

Agreed, religion is an effective way to organize humans. But so are other political systems like Capitalism, Communism, and Fascism.

Are all political movements inherently beneficial to human survival? Is religion superior to other forms of political organization, vis a vis human survival? 

And is there any biological evidence that the inclination for religion is a direct product of human evolution?

I don't believe religion will take us to see the stars. Religion is only helpful to a point.

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Re: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?
« Reply #28 on: December 19, 2018, 09:28:31 PM »
I'll bet secularism has existed along side of religion since the beginning. There was someone going "Naw."

It's true that atheism has existed at least since classical times. In ancient Greece, disbelief in the gods was a capital crime. In ancient Rome, refusal to worship the state deities was considered a form of treason.

The atheism you are describing is not the same atheism as it is understood in modern times. In fact, Christians in Ancient Rome were persecuted for being atheists by rejecting Roman deities.

Granted, the ancient world didn't have such a thing as "secularism" in the sense of "separating religion from politics." That concept is a product of the 18th Century Enlightenment.

But what I'm describing is "atheism" in the sense of "not believing in gods". That philosophical position has existed throughout all of recorded history.

I only brought up the Romans because they had laws against refusing to worship. So their criminal code defined "atheism" such that it also included Christians. That does not alter the fact that there existed some people who did not believe in gods. Those people were atheists, just like today's atheists.


Religion is indeed unifying within a somewhat homogeneous population. Religion brought destruction to external populations whose philosophies were in direct conflict with the invader and competed for the same resources (arable land, material wealth, people's minds, political power etc).

Religion may engender unity within a population, but only among those who don't challenge the group-think. At the same time, it's often detrimental to the freethinking individuals within the society.

So religion would appear to suppress dissent within the social group. Is there any evidence that suppression of dissent once served to enhance the survivability of the species?

Even if so, then it ought to be clear by now that any such advantage does not scale to accommodate an interactive global ecology.


Now on your point about self destructive religions, I was just watching a video clip about an insect, armored ground cricket, that squirts its foul tasting blood to fend off aggressors. There is a hilarious side effect though, the insect becomes attractive food to members of its own specie who cannot resist the smell. They hunt it down and consume it whole. I believe it's on netflix, second episode of season 1 (Africa - narrated by David Attenborough). My argument here is that it's not unreasonable to find both negative and positive effect of traits in nature. I would consider those to be outliers, rather than the norm.

Yes, it's possible for some beneficial traits to have a detrimental downside, and religions are not the only kind of behavior that causes organisms to kill others of their own species.

But unlike the bug's stink-spraying defense, religion offers no protection against nonhuman predators. It only serves to turn human populations against each other, and ostracize some individuals from the population. 

What is the evolutionary benefit to that?

Weigh that against the fact that religion often instigates war, oppression, mass suicide, and other maladaptive behavior. Does religion still look so beneficial to survival? 


By the way, secular states are waging war in the middle east, but that doesn't mean secularism is wrong.

Which specific Middle Eastern secular states are you referring to? Israel? Saudi Arabia? Yemen?

At any rate, secular states do not go to war as a consequence of their secularism per se. They fight over resources, and cultural and ideological differences which (surprise, surprise) usually involve differences of religion.


Religion is abhorrent to us skeptics only because it's the enemy of self actualization.

I find religion abhorrent because the entire endeavor is based on promoting nonsense to manipulate people.

That nonsense will inhibit those manipulated from reaching their full potential, wasting efforts on misleading ideas/concepts styming progress. You are kind of agreeing with me here about the self-actualization thing.

I agree on the self-actualization thing, but I also object to religion on other grounds as well.

"Self-actualization" is just the rarefied pinnacle of Maslow's famous "Hierarchy of Needs."



Religion not only inhibits Self-actualization, but is also harmful on every other level of the pyramid. Religion causes harm to people's Esteem by making them emotionally dependent upon it. Religion alienates some individuals from Love and Belonging when they're persecuted or shunned for dogmatic reasons. By fomenting alienation and animosity among different cultures, religious differences also represent a threat to general Safety, and are frequently used as a premise to withhold Physiological necessities from nonbelievers.


Do you believe this held true for the last 10000, 20000, or 150000 years? Quote: "Religious thought might be proliferating in humans for no better reason than our neuroloplasticity and biochemistry allows us to derive comfort from earning and participating in a shared delusion".

Yes, I do.


I do agree with your point that evolution doesn't necessarily weed out traits unless they're detrimental to life. I also do not prescribe to the notion that natural selection is completely random.

I'm happy that you agree, because the preponderance of evidence also agrees! 


I do not think a trait will make an appearance so strong without some kind of environmental pressure causing an organism/population to adapt. I think laws of nature in place forces evolution phenomena to behave like an expert economist.

I don't get what you're talking about here. Your "expert economist" model reads like a gross misunderstanding of evolutionary theory. The process of evolution does not require any kind of guidance by nebulous "forces of nature." Some behavioral traits can develop even without any express evolutionary purpose. The "strength" of religion as an evolutionary adaptation is not evident, so that part would appear to be circular reasoning.

Just because a lot of people tend to believe unreasonable things and some irrational ideas become culturally ingrained, it does not follow that irrational thought therefore must have some inherent evolutionary benefit. Maybe it's only been marginally detrimental thus far, but just not enough to wipe out our species yet.

Evolution is about the survivability of species, not the propagation of ideology. Some religions may propagate at the expense of competing religions and ideologies, but that alone doesn't constitute evidence that religion is beneficial to the survivability of the human species.


If religion is so widespread within a population, there is a reason for it most likely a non trivial one. There are simply too many religious people.

Every single human on Earth is born with a vermiform appendix hanging off the lower end of their ascending colon. This structure has no apparent biological purpose, and we can live a perfectly healthy life without it. Our appendix is not only unnecessary and useless, but is even potentially life threatening. There's a roughly 1 in 20 chance that it will become infected, requiring emergency removal to prevent the death of the individual.



How can the appendix be such a liability if it's common to all humans? Perhaps some useless and life-threatening things can also be widespread?


The religious feeling is almost instinctual and religious people cannot shake that feeling. I really do think it's biologically ingrained for most individuals.

Why don't you don't believe those kinds of feelings can be cultivated and developed through personal experience? Have you ever known an atheist who went to church and ended up becoming religious? 


Here's a couple of NCBI paper linking religiosity more closely to biology:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3125629/
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12289962
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5646707/

The above articles are indicative of a pattern to which we as skeptics need to pay attention when we are evaluating religiosity.

That first article studies the observation that religious people in modern times are having more offspring. It does not demonstrate the inverse (religion having a biological cause) as you're suggesting. In fact, it tactly assumes that premise right in the first sentence of the discussion: "This paper assumes that there exist genetic differences between individuals that affect their predisposition towards religion." But no evidence is presented to support religion having a biological cause.

The second article is behind a paywall, but by the abstract I can tell that it's just another study of the cultural effect of religiosity on family size.

The third paper also does not present evidence for genetic or biological predispositions of religion. It's a survey of clinical depression in people who identify as religious or spiritual. It claims to have discovered a correlation between "spirituality" and higher genetic disposition for seratonin, dopamine, and oxytocin response. Its conclusion makes no sense though. On one hand it claims a genetic predisposition, then it uses that alleged finding as a basis to recommend "spiritual guidance" as a treatment for the children of depressed patients. But it seems that the researchers are getting their causes and effects mixed up. If the spirituality and neurotransmitter responses are indeed both consequences of the same genetic cause, then how is "spiritual guidance" supposed to help? They haven't proven that spirituality causes higher neurotransmitter response. This kind of circular reasoning is not surprising considering the source; it's from a journal called Clinical Spiritual Practice. Oof!

Sorry I don't find any of these compelling.


Well, we don't particularly know what animals are thinking. A century ago, no one could have imagined...

That's an argument from ignorance.


Ostracizing outsiders is not inconsistent with evolution. For instance, lion pride will not tolerate other lions seen as outsiders. They will aggressively eliminate any competition.

We humans don't generally kill the offspring of other humans because unlike lions, we're a social species. Killing off productive members of our social group is not very beneficial to a social species.


Edits: for phrasing.



What a monster post. So much I wanna say, so little time xD.

There are nuances to certain things I have said, some of which you have touched on slightly. It just seems to me you're taking things so black and white, not seeing the gray. By the way, you don't need to focus so much of your efforts to convince me of the negative impact of religion. I am a former catholic that 'converted' to atheism after all.

Religion looks bad now because you are comparing it to secularism.
« Last Edit: December 19, 2018, 09:42:36 PM by haudace »

Online haudace

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Re: Is Religiosity Hereditary? Did It Evolve Through Natural Selection?
« Reply #29 on: December 20, 2018, 07:46:18 AM »
I think the I can boil down your argument to watchmaker argument that ID people are so fond of, yours is not necessarily the same but the substance and the line of thinking is similar. Are behaviors evolved? Can a behavior come about without evolution? Is religiosity a behavior? Those are the questions that needs to be asked. Cars, science, politics are all products of our evolution coming from our abilities to reason, plan and pattern detection. Religiosity is no different.

You are seeing a current state of religions throughout the world and saying it's too stupid to have evolved. Put a naked mole rat out its natural habitat and so how well it will fare. Religion is maladapted to modern times where science gaining more and more authority.

On your counter point about evolution being an expert economist, yes of course it is... There are laws of nature that cannot be circumvented. Evolution builds on genetic precursors. People won't suddenly evolve wings out nowhere. On your point about the appendix, it may not have a significant role in the present but it is hypothesized that it did past when ancestors possessed a different diet and were more arboreal. 



 

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