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AAI Copenhagen 2010: Gregory Paul - Is religion really universal and good? [1/6]

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Uploaded on Aug 10, 2010

Is religion really universal and good?

A fast growing body of psychosociological research is finally answering a set of longstanding questions about religion and its interactions with science and society including economics, societal conditions and politics. The results show that religion is not universal among humans, being a relatively superficial, optional opinion that is much less hard-wired in humans than are language, materialism, and a number of other human activities.

Religion is popular only when the socioeconomic circumstances of a nation are sufficiently dysfunctional in terms of mass poverty or middle class insecurity, and the attainment of the highest levels of secure prosperity in 1st world nations except the U.S. has consistently suppressed mass faith via spontaneous, casual conversion as citizens lose interest in petitioning the gods. It is therefore not possible for high levels of mass religiosity to create superior societal conditions since the latter automatically drive the former down. Defective moral codes and the impossibility of the existence of a good creator further hinder the ability of religion to improve the human condition.

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About Gregory Paul:

An independent researcher whose technical research has appeared in Science, Evolutionary Psychology, Journal of Religion & Society, Philosophy & Theology, Journal of Medical Ethics and Paediatrics. Popular essays are in Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Edge, Science and Religion Today and New Scientist.

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