Why Women, Children And Americans Are More Likely To Believe In God

Businessinsider.com: University College London professor emeritus of genetics Steve Jonesexplains why men, scientists, professors and the British are less likely to believe in God than women, children and Americans.

Here in Aberystwyth, the centre of town has a convenient car park. Until a few years ago it was the Seilo chapel, a fine 19th-century structure destroyed by people to whom a connection with the past meant nothing. The building has gone but its tenants had fled long before. But why? Perhaps the new science of faith might help. It hints that a tendency to believe is implanted in the mind long before a child hears its first sermon.

Many children attribute magical properties to physical objects. In one unkind experiment, infants were persuaded that a scientist had invented an apparatus that made an exact duplicate of any article placed inside it. Their favourite stuffed animal was put within, the lights flashed, and with some sleight of hand the child was given the toy back and told that it was a replica. Almost without exception, they rejected it. Somehow, the supposed copy had lost a mysterious quality present within the original. For the tearful subjects, reality involved more than the real.


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