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The Evolution of Gods: The Scientific Origin of Divinity and Religions [Kindle Edition]

Ajay Kansal
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $3.00

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Book Description

This book explains why, when and how humanity invented various religions and gods.
The process began around 100,000 years ago; during this epoch, many nomadic human bands, all over the world, invented primitive languages and began to decipher each happening around them. Whatever they could not comprehend, their chiefs or priests attributed to some unseen power.
At some point in time, we do not know exactly when it happened, humans invented an activity: they began to worship each seen or unseen power, which was beyond their control, but could either harm or help them. They invented almost identical methods of worship, such as folding their hands, bowing, kneeling, floral offering, prayers and sacrifices.
For example, anthropologists believe that during the last Ice Age, humans had largely inadequate protection against cold; their survival depended largely upon available sunlight—something beyond their control. In that scenario, solar worship was a logical outcome. In a similar manner, they found thunder and lightning inexplicable and frightening; gradually, they began to worship the sky as a god. There is enough historical evidence to assert that the ancestors of Hindus, Buddhists, Jews, Christians and Muslims worshiped the sun and the sky, before their religions came into practice.
The ability to speak and share their ideas helped humans invent many useful devices such as hearths, stitching needles, leathers and footwear. With their aid, they began to lead an easier, healthier and safer life. Consequently, their population began to increase: approximately 10,000 years ago, it exploded to such an extent that they faced a food crisis. Since necessity is the mother of inventions, several human bands invented the technique of cultivation. Farming necessitated them to settle down near fields and ultimately gave rise to homes, villages, cities and civilizations. Gradually, farmers began to face famine caused by droughts and floods. The priests of several places in the world visualized fertility gods and goddesses behind the growth of their crop, and people began to worship them.
Around 3,000 years ago, cultivation paved the way for another population explosion. At the same time, a sedentary lifestyle exposed people to pets, rodents, mosquitoes, houseflies and other parasites. All these factors together gave rise to devastating new diseases such as cholera, tuberculosis, typhoid and plague. Furthermore, huge population instigated social diseases such as poverty, inequality, injustice, crime and exploitation. Consequently, most people were forced to lead miserable lives no better than hell. Around this time, several saints such as the Buddha and Moses visualized the remedies of human sufferings. Contemporary priests transcribed their teachings as the holy scriptures. These books mentioned worship of new gods, sacrifices, magic or morals to eradicate human miseries: the miserable masses had no option but to follow those advices. These scriptures fashioned the organized religions of today. Thus, history demonstrates that whenever humans faced a new challenge, priests invented a more useful deity and consigned the older one to oblivion.
Although humanity invented gods to wrestle with their mysteries and miseries, religious dogmas halted the progress of science, facilitated human exploitation, instigated many massacres and wars throughout history and ultimately gave rise to modern terrorism. The knowledge about the evolution of gods may vaccinate the readers against the disease of fanaticism.
Let us think for a moment why humanity developed several religious concepts but only one science. For example, one dogma avers idol worship and the other asserts the contrary: scientific principles have no such ambiguities. There is a concrete reason behind this contradiction: about one thing or concept there is only one truth, but there can be many lies. This book is an effort to light a candle in the darkest corner of human consciousnes


Product Details

  • File Size: 866 KB
  • Print Length: 214 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers India (August 9, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B008XK505O
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #66,413 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unique and Welcomed Perspective December 12, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The Evolution of Gods: The Scientific Origin of Divinity and Religions by Ajay Kansal

"The Evolution of Gods" is a very ambitious and interesting book that explains the evolution of gods. It explains the when, why and how humankind invented divine powers. The book focuses on archeological and literary evidence. It also provides a brief history on Hinduism, Judaism and Christianity. Dr Kansal does a commendable job of supporting his main argument that the gods have been invented by humankind. This insightful 212-page book is composed of the following eleven chapters: 1. Life after Death, 2. Birth of Gods, 3. Learning to Survive, 4. Learning to Write, 5. Sacrifice---to Bribe Gods, 6. Gods and Demons of Diseases, 7. Hinduism, 8. Judaism, 9. Christianity, 10. Origin of Life, and 11. Why Gods Are Still Alive.

Positives:
1. Well researched and accessible book for the masses.
2. Good use of reason and sound logic. In defense of science.
3. Anthropology provided interesting information about prehistoric human groups. The impact of language, agriculture, roles of gender...
4. The earliest forms of religion. Burials, human and animal sacrifices, the emergence of the soul, etc...Good stuff.
5. The fundamental features of almost all religious ideologies.
6. Archeology provided the evidence needed to make sound conclusions about prehistoric lifestyles which included their beliefs and practices.
7. Thought-provoking statements backed by sound reasoning. "Whenever people encountered some power beyond their control that could harm or help them, they began to worship that power". Many examples provided.
8. Agriculture and the worship of female deities.
9.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed July 25, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I stumbled upon this book as the result of a well-publicized book tour and was immediately intrigued and excited by the subject matter. I read the preface, which in and of itself was exhaustive, and found myself apprehensive and fervently hoping that the actual content would be presented in a more engaging manner that would compel me to read further. Such was not the case. I understand that the intent is to inform, but the tone and pace were so meticulously dry that, despite my profound interest in the subject matter, I gave up after the first few chapters, not bothering to wade through the rest of the book. From a content standpoint, I was disappointed to see that, while clearly well-researched, many assertions were made without references backing them up. Referring in a nebulous fashion to "studies have shown..." or "anthropologists believe..." doesn't build sufficient credibility to support ensuing statements and assertions, and disqualifies the book as a serious or significant work on the subject. Bottom line, I was excited to begin the book, and became disenchanted quite quickly.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition
For thousands of years there has existed a diversity of arguments concerning the existence or nonexistence of God, and I am sure if you ever followed a college course in Philosophy or Religion, you probably have come across some of these debates proposed by philosophers, theologians, scientists, and others. Some of the familiar names that have articulated an opinion one way or another include Plato, Aristotle, Epicurus, St. Anselm, Aquinas, Descartes, Kant, Hume, Nietzche, Russell, and many others.

To add another voice to the debate we now have Dr Ajay Kansal, author of The Evolution of the Gods who is a professor and consultant in clinical pathology in India. He informs us that what motivated him to write his book was his loss of faith in religion and God as a result of his witnessing the many tragedies and suffering that exist today. Consequently, over the past ten years he has embarked on the study of anthropology and the history of religions which led him to the conclusion that the concept of God is merely a figment of the imagination or a fantasy. It doesn't make sense to presume that because we have the capacity of mentally visualizing God that it follows that one actually exists.

Structuring his ambitious exploration of the subject matter around eleven themes and using scientific arguments, anthropological research and his vast knowledge of the history of medicine, Dr Kansal digs into such topics as life after death, birth of Gods, learning to survive, learning to write, sacrifice--to Bribe Gods, Gods and demons of diseases, Hinduism, Judaism, Christianity, origin of life and why Gods are still alive.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
By Tim
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book can be disturbing. In a very logical way, it unravels the history of man and our worship of gods. It has made me seriously question our dependence on religious beliefs that, in many instances, have been based on stories passed down from generation to generation and held as truths. Scientific knowledge has brought to light the reasons for plagues, tuberculosis, mental illness, faminine, droughts, floods, etc., and not because of an "angry" god. Yet, even in our new scientific and medical knowledge in the 20th and 21st centuries, we have hung steadfastily to our old religious beliefs. Perhaps early man was right in believing in the sun god...it has brought life to planet earth.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars The Evolution of Gods
Interesting. Worth readîng.
Published 20 days ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
easy to understand for a hungarian too
Published 1 month ago by Istvan
3.0 out of 5 stars A OK Book for Quick Reading
I purchased this book out of curiosity. It was not difficult to read. The author tries to explain the pertinent topics with "facts"; however, often, these "facts"... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Prahlad D. Pant
4.0 out of 5 stars good explanation if the evolution of religion.
This book explained the evolution of religion well. The explanation of the top three religions was good too,but too brief. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Wolfmn
4.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the read!
It may start somewhat slow but stick with it and you will gain some excellent points of view and be challenged to really think.
Published 2 months ago by Franklin E Hodson Jr
1.0 out of 5 stars Can't read it.
The type is too small to read. Sorry.
Published 2 months ago by dmt
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Reading
Well written chronology of possible events that could interpret myths and legends that have been framed historically. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Rick
2.0 out of 5 stars Great title, but like a restaurant with a fine ...
A lot of opinion and reporting in summary on what others have found. Great title, but like a restaurant with a fine appearance and ghastly cook, it is not scholarly or complete on... Read more
Published 3 months ago by David D. Harvison
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great info!
Published 3 months ago by Dnice
2.0 out of 5 stars I think they published the first draft!
I'm an atheist, and have been looking for a book on this subject for awhile now and was excited when I found this. HOWEVER, this book is an abysmal read. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Gary Doty
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More About the Author

Ajay Kansal is working as a professor and consultant in clinical pathology. During his medical practice, he encountered many suffering patients, which drilled a hole in his faith. Besides, he noticed terrorism, poverty, inequality, exploitation, injustice, crimes, etc. Gradually, he realized that gods and religions are doing nothing to resuscitate the suffering humanity. Rather priests' promises make complacent to the sufferers; they do only worship in place of struggle.
Ajay began conceiving that gods and religions seem to be human imagination. During the last ten years, he studied anthropology and history of religions to find answers of his questions. That knowledge attested his previous conception. After this, he could not resist spreading the knowledge among others and wrote this book.


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