Mind and God: The new science of neurotheology

Studies show that religion and spirituality are positively linked to good mental health. Our research aims to figure out how and why.

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  • Neurotheology is a field that unites brain science and psychology with religious belief and practices.
  • There are several indirect and direct mechanisms that link spirituality with improved mental health.
  • Compassion and love are positive emotions that will make your brain healthier.
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The nomological argument for the existence of God

Regularities, which we associate with laws of nature, require an explanation.

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  • The nomological argument for the existence of God comes from the Greek nomos or "law," because it's based on the laws of nature.
  • There are pragmatic, aesthetic, and moral reasons for regularities to exist in nature.
  • The best explanation may be the existence of a personal God rather than mindless laws or chance.
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Just how useful is human gene editing?

In the near-term, gene editing is not likely to be useful. Even in the long-term, it may not be very practical.

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  • Once perfected, gene editing is likely to be useful only under limited conditions.
  • Multigenic diseases like schizophrenia and cardiovascular disease are probably too complicated to be fixed by gene editing.
  • Embryo screening is a far more effective way to achieve the same objective.
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Fighting online misinformation: We're doing it wrong

Counterintuitively, directly combating misinformation online can spread it further. A different approach is needed.

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Coronavirus
  • Like the coronavirus, engaging with misinformation can inadvertently cause it to spread.
  • Social media has a business model based on getting users to spend increasing amounts of time on their platforms, which is why they are hesitant to remove engaging content.
  • The best way to fight online misinformation is to drown it out with the truth.
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Self-awareness is what makes us human

Because of our ability to think about thinking, "the gap between ape and man is immeasurably greater than the one between amoeba and ape."

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Mind & Brain
  • Self-awareness — namely, our capacity to think about our thoughts — is central to how we perceive the world.
  • Without self-awareness, education, literature, and other human endeavors would not be possible.
  • Striving toward greater self-awareness is the spiritual goal of many religions and philosophies.
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Why Aristotle didn't invent modern science

Modern science progresses with an intensity and even irrationality that Aristotle could not fathom.

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Surprising Science
  • Modern science requires scrutinizing the tiniest of details and an almost irrational dedication to empirical observation.
  • Many scientists believe that theories should be "beautiful," but such argumentation is forbidden in modern science.
  • Neglecting beauty would be a step too far for Aristotle.
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