07 April 2007

Built to Believe

Neuroscientists have discovered that there may be universal features of the human mind that make it easier for us to believe in a higher power. Depending on your beliefs, brain scans identifying particular areas of the brain that are involved in spiritual experiences and indicating that our brains are built to believe in God may provide proof of an innate, physical conduit between human beings and God or simply proof that the emotions attached to religion and God are nothing more than manifestations of brain circuitry, a mere byproduct of many different evolutionary functions that organised our brains for day-to-day activity.

In an article on the neurotheological research, CNN observes, "To be sure, religion has the unparalleled power to bring people into groups. Religion has helped humans survive, adapt and evolve in groups over the ages. It's also helped us learn to cope with death, identify danger and finding mating partners."

Either way, be it caused by or Divine construction or Darwinian adaptation, as the report concludes, "scientific images can track our thoughts on God, but it would take a long leap of faith to identify why we think of God in the first place."

Happy Easter!