Moderator: Nicole Marie
There's an interesting book named "The Brain" by Richard Restrak, wherein he claims that the cerebrum evolved and became large in mammals to process smell. The sense of smell he says is the only one wired directly into the cerebrum. The others come in through the limbic system, an older more primitive part of the brain. This direct connection is why for example the smell of fresh bread can instantly evoke such strong memories of grandma's kitchen. To process a scent and think out a plan of pursuit may well have been the beginning of abstract thought and a rudimentary awareness of time. When the language lobes came along they allowed adaptation through accrued experience at the pace of individual lifetimes, certainly faster than natural selection.Originally posted by Schmeelkie:
...I like the long-term planning related to wondering... makes sense to me. And I think a reason religion in general is evolutionarily successful is that it provides a good basis for a community - what the rules are, how we treat one another, and the idea that protecting everyone helps you protect yourself and your children. This increases your chances of producing and raising to adulthood more children than in a more chaotic community.
Andy Warton wrote:Also, one of the problems of religion's assertion that humans are morally accountable to some higher power, is evolution itself. If we are culpable, when did we become so? Evolution is a vicious process that requires a considerable degree of selfishness - even cut-throat behaviour. At what point, many ask, in the evolutionary line, did we become morally culpable?
barfle wrote:If you look at some of the discoveries that have been made regarding human ancestors, you will see that many of them buried their dead with artifacts that seem to have meaning for the deceased. These beings had enough sense of the group to feel the loss of one of its members. There have been animals with moral codes much longer than there have been humans.
Andy Warton wrote:But then doesn't that raise questions about the teachings of at least every (classical Western) theological system?
Andy Warton wrote:God made man in his image, and that's what makes us special.
Andy Warton wrote:what does that mean for religion?
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