Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Intelligent People Have "Unnatural" Preferences and Values That Are Novel in Human Evolutionary History (Satoshi Kanazawa, American Sociological Association)
"... religion is a byproduct of humans' tendency to perceive agency and intention as causes of events, to see "the hands of God" at work behind otherwise natural phenomena. "Humans are evolutionarily designed to be paranoid, and they believe in God because they are paranoid," says Kanazawa. This innate bias toward paranoia served humans well when self-preservation and protection of their families and clans depended on extreme vigilance to all potential dangers. "So, more intelligent children are more likely to grow up to go against their natural evolutionary tendency to believe in God, and they become atheists."

Does the Devil Really Wear Prada? The Psychology of Anthropomorphism and Dehumanization (
"Anthropomorphism in reverse is known as dehumanization — when humans are represented as nonhuman objects or animals. There are numerous historical examples of dehumanization including the Nazis’ persecution of Jews during the Holocaust and torture at the Abu-Ghraib prison in Iraq. These examples also suggest that those engaging in dehumanization are usually part of a cohesive group acting against outsiders — that is, individuals who feel socially connected may have an increased tendency towards dehumanization. The authors note, “Social connection may have benefits for a person’s own health and well-being but may have unfortunate consequences for intergroup relations by enabling dehumanization.”

While I don't have any references to support this, it never the less bears asking: Will a person who is exposed to sex at a young age, perceive their value to society differently than one who's never experienced it. Because their first teachers (including clergy) didn't provide alternative direction, that kid might be more inclined to wonder "why am I here?". From my own experience, kids don't tend to ask that question without prompting, (a question that the church claims to be qualified to answer, and indeed propagates inquiry as well. So a valid question might be: How many sexually repressed religious people have been "victims" of sexual abuse but don't admit it?)

wondering like that develops when a "victim" of underage sex realizes that they are equal somehow to anything the so called authorities have to offer. So how to relate? compete or be ignored? If one believes the traditional lore that something terrible has happened, and orients ones life around it, then yes, a self fulfilling prophecy has occurred. However, if one experiences it as just another mammalian social event, then they're diverging from the social norm into some kind of pervert universe. Most kids prefer social inclusion, so they accept it as abuse, unless maybe it was with another kid because there they have some control over how it's perceived among their peers.

I would like to read your comments on this.