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Why We Believe In God S

Author: J. Anderson Thomson
Publisher: Pitchstone Publishing (US&CA)
ISBN: 0984493239
Size: 25.86 MB
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In this groundbreaking volume, J. Anderson Thomson, Jr., MD, with Clare Aukofer, offers a succinct yet comprehensive study of how and why the human mind generates religious belief. Dr. Thomson, a highly respected practicing psychiatrist with credentials in forensic psychiatry and evolutionary psychology, methodically investigates the components and causes of religious belief in the same way any scientist would investigate the movement of astronomical bodies or the evolution of life over time—that is, as a purely natural phenomenon. Providing compelling evidence from psychology, the cognitive neurosciences, and related fields, he, with Ms. Aukofer, presents an easily accessible and exceptionally convincing case that god(s) were created by man—not vice versa. With this slim volume, Dr. Thomson establishes himself as a must-read thinker and leading voice on the primacy of reason and science over superstition and religion.

Supernatural Agents

Author: Iikka Pyysiainen
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780199701759
Size: 27.55 MB
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The cognitive science of religion is a rapidly growing field whose practitioners apply insights from advances in cognitive science in order to provide a better understanding of religious impulses, beliefs, and behaviors. In this book Ilkka Pyysi?inen shows how this methodology can profitably be used in the comparative study of beliefs about superhuman agents. He begins by developing a theoretical outline of the basic, modular architecture of the human mind and especially the human capacity to understand agency. He then goes on to discuss examples of supernatural agency in detail, arguing that the human ability to attribute beliefs and desires to others forms the basis of conceptions of supernatural agents and of such social cognition in which supernatural agents are postulated as interested parties in social life. Beliefs about supernatural agency are natural, says Pyysi?inen, in the sense that such concepts are used in an intuitive and automatic fashion. Two dots and a straight line below them automatically trigger the idea of a face, for example. Given that the mind consists of a host of such modular mechanisms, certain kinds of beliefs will always have a selective advantage over others. Abstract theological concepts are usually elaborate versions of such simpler and more contagious folk conceptions. Pyysi?inen uses ethnographical and survey materials as well as doctrinal treatises to show that there are certain recurrent patterns in beliefs about supernatural agents both at the level of folk-religion and of formal theology.

Why Would Anyone Believe In God

Author: Justin L. Barrett
Publisher: Altamira Press
Size: 77.96 MB
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Because of the design of our minds. That is Justin Barrett's simple answer to the question of his title. With rich evidence from cognitive science but without technical language, psychologist Barrett shows that belief in God is an almost inevitable consequence of the kind of minds we have. Most of what we believe comes from mental tools working below our conscious awareness. And what we believe consciously is in large part driven by these unconscious beliefs. Barrett demonstrates that beliefs in gods match up well with these automatic assumptions; beliefs in an all-knowing, all-powerful God match up even better. Barrett goes on to explain why beliefs like religious beliefs are so widespread and why it is very difficult for our minds to think without them. Anyone who wants a concise, clear, and scientific explanation of why anyone would believe in God should pick up Barrett's book.

Why God

Author: Dan DeWitt
Publisher: B&H Kids
ISBN: 9781535938198
Size: 75.22 MB
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This apologetics primer tackles children's big questions about God--Who is He? Why should I believe in Him?--while opening their eyes and hearts to His glory.

Is Our Vision Of God Obsolete

Author: G.R. Pafumi
Publisher: Xlibris Corporation
ISBN: 1450003966
Size: 50.48 MB
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Our vision of God varies by culture. It has changed over the millennia. We no longer believe in the pagan gods of the Romans and Greeks. Why should we expect that our current view of God will not change? Scientific knowledge and discovery is occurring at a pace never before experienced in human history. Yet our concept of God remains mired in the 15th century. This is about to change. It will become increasingly difficult for religions to convince believers educated in modern science to blindly accept as truth religious dogmas conceived centuries ago. Religious scripture is a combination of literature, myth and superstition. Science will invalidate many of these myths. This is why intelligent design advocates fear science.

Warum Wir An Gott Glauben

Author: J. Anderson Thomson
Publisher: Springer-Verlag
ISBN: 3642377726
Size: 14.22 MB
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Gott ist von Menschen gemacht J. Anderson Thomson und Clare Aukofer gehen in diesem kompakten und prägnanten Werk der Frage nach, wie und warum der Geist des Menschen religiöse Überzeugungen hervorbringt. Thomson, der sich in forensischer Psychiatrie und Evolutionspsychologie einen Namen gemacht hat, untersucht die Bestandteile und Ursachen des religiösen Glaubens genauso systematisch, wie ein Wissenschaftler die Bewegungen der Himmelskörper oder die Evolution des Lebens analysiert: Für ihn sind sie ein ganz und gar natürliches Phänomen. Gemeinsam mit Clare Aukofer trägt er gewichtige Belege aus Psychologie, neurowissenschaftlicher Kognitionsforschung und verwandten Fachgebieten zusammen und legt so leicht verständlich und überzeugend dar, dass Gott (oder die Götter) von Menschen erschaffen wurden und nicht umgekehrt. Mit diesem schmalen Band empfiehlt sich Thomson gleichermaßen als lesenswerter Autor wie als führende Stimme in dem Bemühen, Vernunft und Wissenschaft den Vorrang gegenüber Religion und Aberglauben zu verschaffen.

God S Vision Or Television

Author: C. Jeffrey Wright
Publisher: Urban Ministries Inc
ISBN: 9780940955912
Size: 60.81 MB
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Do you spend more time watching television than you do reading your bible? How much of your news and information do you get by watching television as opposed to reading God's inspired Word- the Bible- is still the source of the truth in the world today. In this thought-provoking book, the author examines how television affects what we believe and what we can do about it.

Why We Suffer

Author: Robin Sacredfire
Publisher: 22 Lions -
Size: 38.18 MB
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When somebody asks me “do you believe in God?” I have to answer “yes, but maybe mine is not the one you’re talking about”. Some people get scared and others smile at this answer, which can be seen as either a joke or a warning. What few people wonder is about what kind of God are they believing in. They always assume that if my God isn’t the same as theirs, I’m the one worshiping the wrong God. However, the question related to believing or not in a God, and in what kind of God we believe, makes a huge difference when we want to debate the question of “why does God allow suffering”. This difference is behind the creation of millions of different belief systems, each one claiming that their God is the true God. I’m not in favor of the opinion that all Gods are true, which, even if correct, would have to make us question about how many Gods do exist. The main point is that it doesn't matter how many Gods exist, or if they are all different and true in their uniqueness, as they could only operate under one single system that could be common to all human beings on Earth. Therefore, we can assume that maybe different Gods could have different purposes in different galaxies where beings are also different from us. This book proposes to explore, and precisely describe, how a God, or Gods, operate in this planet in particular. Maybe the rules described here don’t match the God of the reader, and that’s why I must say that this is all about my God, the one in which I believe. Nevertheless, I must mention that I spent my entire life studying different religions with its leaders, and each one of them told me that my believe system was the same as theirs, at least until we could find something to disagree with, which was actually rare, because the deepest we go in any study of any religious philosophy, the closer we get to the universal truth behind the meaning of each one of them. I always believed that my God is a good one, so I struggled for many years of my life trying to understand why I was suffering so much and without any mercy. And then I wondered why so many good people that I knew were suffering. I lost my faith many times, and ended up searching for answers in opposite philosophies, namely, Wicca and Satanic. But I realized that their answers were just another perspective about the same reality. In fact, my researches on the field of exorcism reinforced this knowledge with a more accurate analysis. In the end, I was able to make my inner positive nature prevail, and as I continued my studies among different religious systems, and later in the temples of Buddhists in China and Hindus in India, I was able to get a much wider approach to suffering in life. Today, it’s very simple for me to see why anyone suffers. It only takes a few seconds to realize it. This skill has helped me make many people happy without many efforts. And they all said that I changed their life dramatically, with just a few very powerful words that they'll never forget. The power of these words doesn't come from me, but the universal truth that God wants us to learn. My life today is far happier than it ever was, although I can’t say that it's perfect. And even though I helped many souls reach a better insight about the meaning of their lives, there are still many others that I couldn't help, because they are not ready for the truth. Even for me, it took quite a few years to understand how this truth works. Today I know that it doesn't matter if I believe in it or not, because you don’t need faith to believe in a way out of the suffering. At least, it’s not the most important thing. But you do need to know why and how suffering works, to understand its meaning. In this book, the way out of the suffering, as well as its reasons, are clearly described. But I must warn the reader that the answers aren't pleasant and most people can't accept them. So, knowing them won’t mean that we can help ourselves and anybody else. Even though what you'll read here are facts. These facts reveal the way out of the pain, including in situations in which we've been suffering for decades and since we were born. The challenges in accepting and applying them have to do only with our distance towards the lessons that God wants us to learn to get closer to him in the end.

The Believing Brain

Author: Michael Shermer
Publisher: Macmillan
ISBN: 9781429972611
Size: 69.84 MB
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The Believing Brain is bestselling author Michael Shermer's comprehensive and provocative theory on how beliefs are born, formed, reinforced, challenged, changed, and extinguished. In this work synthesizing thirty years of research, psychologist, historian of science, and the world's best-known skeptic Michael Shermer upends the traditional thinking about how humans form beliefs about the world. Simply put, beliefs come first and explanations for beliefs follow. The brain, Shermer argues, is a belief engine. From sensory data flowing in through the senses, the brain naturally begins to look for and find patterns, and then infuses those patterns with meaning. Our brains connect the dots of our world into meaningful patterns that explain why things happen, and these patterns become beliefs. Once beliefs are formed the brain begins to look for and find confirmatory evidence in support of those beliefs, which accelerates the process of reinforcing them, and round and round the process goes in a positive-feedback loop of belief confirmation. Shermer outlines the numerous cognitive tools our brains engage to reinforce our beliefs as truths. Interlaced with his theory of belief, Shermer provides countless real-world examples of how this process operates, from politics, economics, and religion to conspiracy theories, the supernatural, and the paranormal. Ultimately, he demonstrates why science is the best tool ever devised to determine whether or not a belief matches reality.