Friday, November 09, 2007

Blogroll: The Lazy Post

I have a headache, so here are some random links:

Cognitive Daily has an interesting survey on house cleaning, who does it, and how much it annoys us. Fortunately, there's just me around here, so I'm spared the mess-related bickering.

Aardvarchaeology on using DNA to decode the diet of the ancients.

Omni Brain and the best way to distract a free throw shooter

Thus Spake Zuska on tools v. gadgets

Evolving Thoughts has what I like to call "the conspiracy theory of religion," which confuses the uses to which religion has been applied in some societies with the origin of religion and/or theism. Social/power structures may explain the development of some religions into hierarchies and/or the coopting of religion to serve the state, but ignores those religions and those societies in which hierarchy is weak to nonexistent. It also ignores the fact that (if the study of the most "primitive" living human groups is any indication) the belief in deities, spirits, etc. precedes the development of complex social structures. This theory also has a major characteristic of far too many theories in the field of evolutionary psychology, it derives from almost complete speculation with no or incomplete correlation with the data available. More on my "favorite" evolutionary psychology theories later.

2 Comments:

Blogger John Wilkins said...

Thanks for the link, Melinda. I think I have dealt with the existence of animist rituals and beliefs - I do not think these are the same thing as religion. They are social cohesive practices, and also are based on anthropomorphism, but they aren't religions as such. I'll blog on this later, but if you read back you'll find I discussed this.

3:05 AM  
Blogger Melinda Barton said...

John,

Thanks for the comment. I noticed your content about your definition of religion. However, if you google "define: religion", here's what you'll get: http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=define%3A+religion

Animist rituals and beliefs are indeed religion. They aren't text-based or hierarchical religions (usually) but they are religion. I look forward to reading more of your blogs on the subject. I generally really enjoy your work, although I may disagree on occasion.

8:07 PM  

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