from day 08/12/2013

‘Big Gods’ book club #2: Analytic atheism and the puzzle of apologetic

(This week, is hosting a "book club" webinar discussing Ara Norenzayan's latest book with its author. This précis introduced the discussion.) Norenzayan’s Big Gods presents an elegant account of how belief in super-knowing, powerful and morally concerned gods emerged ...

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‘Big Gods’ book club #1 — Skeptical thoughts

Be that as it may, I am tempted to read this précis as an attempt to stress the political consequences of the birth of moral religions. We all agree (don't we?) that they were huge, especially in the long term — and growing more substantial as more and more people on the planet become exposed to ...

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A précis of ‘Big Gods: How Religion Transformed Cooperation and Conflict’

  Two Puzzles The first puzzle is large-scale human cooperation. Up to about 12,000 years ago all human beings lived in relatively small bands of foragers. Today, virtually everyone, more than 99.99 percent of humanity, lives in vast, cooperative groups of mostly unrelated strangers. ...

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