Given that religious doctrines and god beliefs have not stood up to the scrutiny of science, the fact that religion has persisted so long requires explanation. To understand this phenomenon, it is useful to examine how religion developed in the first place. In a previous talk I discussed how morality is deeply ingrained within us through evolutionary history, based on evidence from other social animals. In this presentation, I review the common theories for how religion developed from this moral base, and offer an educated opinion on which I think is the best. As might be expected, there is not a simple answer, given that this is a question about past behaviors without much physical evidence and on a subject (religion) that is difficult to define precisely.
Werner Haag Bio:
I’ve been a member of ACSJ since May 2013. I have a Ph.D. in Environmental Chemistry with 10 years experience in fundamental research and 30 years in applied chemistry. I’m now semi-retired so I have time to devote to coaching wrestling, orienteering, ballroom dancing and reading about the history of science and religion. I am also on the board of directors of Science is Elementary, a volunteer organization that teaches critical thinking skills to elementary school kids using simple science experiments.