Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Why we Believe by Newsweek

source: via BHA Science

Using the example of Walter Semkiw Sharon Begley introduces the following ideas:-
  • belief in the supernatural seems to arise from the same mental processes that underlie everyday reasoning and perception
  • an age of anxiety, a time of economic distress spurred by a desperate yearning to feel a sense of control in a world spinning out of control - belief in the supernatural or paranormal increases
  • There is a clear survival advantage to imputing aliveness and asking questions later. That's why, during human evolution, our ancestors developed what is called a hypersensitive agency-detection device,
  • Defaulting to the "it's alive!" assumption was "of such considerable value that evolution provided us with greater sensitivity to the presence of living agents than we needed,"
  • The belief that minds are not bound to bodies, and therefore that ghosts and other spirits exist here in the physical world, reflects a deep dualism in the human psyche

By Sharon Begley | NEWSWEEK

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