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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Did Our "Rational Brain" Create God?

We got a note this morning about a new book, Did Man Create God?, written by Dr. David Comings, a neuroscientist and behavioral and molecular geneticist at City of Hope Medical Center in California. The book's premise is that spirituality is hard-wired into a specific part of the brain and because it's pleasurable and critical to our evolution and survival, it will never go away. Comings hopes his book can help readers develop a "rational spirituality" that brings together their "fact-based rational brain" and "faith-based spiritual brain." After all, he says, it's possible that our "rational brain created God to satisfy the transcendent yearnings of our spiritual brain."
Michael Persinger, a psychologist and neuroscientist at Canada's Laurentian University who's famous for his "God helmet," calls the work "one of the most integrative, innovative, and revolutionary books I have read in decades." And Michael Shermer, editor of Skeptic magazine and author of How We Believe, says Comings' book "will be the definitive scientific reference on religion for some time to come." —Heather Wax