That gods and spirits are construed very much like persons is probably one of the best-known traits of religion. Indeed, the Greeks had already noticed that people create gods in their own image.... All this is familiar, indeed so familiar that for a long time anthropologists forgot that this propensity requires an explanation. Why then are gods and spirits so much like humans?
Peppering his study with examples from all over the world, particularly the Fang people of Africa, Boyer offers plenty of evidence for his theory that religious institutions exist to maintain particular threads of social integrity. Though he uses the tools of evolutionary psychology, he is more careful than most EP proponents to avoid ad hoc and circular arguments. Best of all, at least to those unmortified at the idea of examining religion critically, his theories are potentially testable. Even if he turns out to be dead wrong, at least Religion Explained offers a new and powerful framework for thinking about our spiritual lives. --Rob Lightner --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
This book was easy to read and understand.
Boyer does not present any neat, memorable explanation for religious belief -- in fact he carefully dismantles all such theories as the introduction to his book.
The pages seem to take longer to turn than other Kindle books, and the footnotes don't work as links, so they're not very useable on Kindle.
Fascinating stuff, now over 10 years old, about modularity of mind and how the nature of the brain/mind and evolutionary necessity has left us vulnerable to superstition. Read morePublished 3 days ago by D K
I'm reading this book in conjunction with the coursera.com class, "A Brief History of Humankind." The course professor, Dr. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Julia Mira
This is one of the best books about the issue of religion that I ever read. Informative and insightful! I strongly recommend this book to everyone who wants to understand more.Published 6 months ago by Martin Palecek
We have to read this book for a college class and I seriously cant put it down. This book kinda makes you think about who, what, where, when and why humans need a crutch in life.Published 7 months ago by Luci
An excellent read for anyone trying to understand religious belief and why it will most likely be with us for some time to come.Published 7 months ago by Robert S. Papps
Great book for anyone interested in the science of religion! A must read if you are interested in the cognitive science of religion.Published 8 months ago by Alex R.
Takes a bit to follow but its worth it. An entirely new way of thinking about relig
on and mind.