20
Oct

This is Your Brain on God | Michael Ferguson | TEDxSaltLakeCity


Translator: Hiroko Kawano
Reviewer: Peter van de Ven This is your brain on God. (Laughter) As a graduate student
here at the University of Utah, my team and I had the opportunity
to look inside the brains of believing Latter-day Saints,
also known as Mormons, when they were praying,
reading scriptures and watching videos
of the religious leaders’ teaching. Being based in Salt Lake City, Utah,
Mormons are not in short supply. (Laughter) We recruited through the Deseret News,
the LDS Church-owned newspaper, and invited devout members
of the religious community to participate in psychometric testing and functional magnetic
resonance imaging, or fMRI. fMRI is a wonderful scientific tool. It allows us to measure tiny fluctuations
in oxygenated blood flow that correspond
to neural changes in activity. While our participants were
inside of the scanner, they had a button box
attached to their chest so that they could press a button
and indicate to us in real-time when they were feeling the Spirit. It’s a cultural phenomenon that’s a central, epistemological event significant to the truth claims
of the Mormon religion. What we observed was
that across all task conditions, the three areas of the brain that consistently demonstrated
elevated activity were the frontal attention regions, the medial prefrontal cortex and the nucleus accumbens – an area of the brain with an enriched supply
of the reward molecule, dopamine. Far from just being a high tech blobology, this Trinity of neural regions
sketches what we can reasonably label as the neuro spiritual
system of Mormonism. The implications are profound,
both for culture and for the brain. One of the first questions
that comes to mind for me is, “Does this neuro spiritual
system from Mormonism map into the brains of religious
individuals from other faith traditions when they are having
peak, ecstatic religious experiences?” So many of the world’s
spiritual traditions report profound feelings of oneness
with a transcendent source, often accompanied by an
increased charitable disposition. Could it be that these cultural variations are all being supported
by a common core of brain networks? For the first time in the history
of contemplative philosophy and the sciences of the mind, we can answer these questions empirically
by skillfully measuring brain activity with more temporal and spatial precision
than we’ve ever been able to do even in the recent past of neuroscience. This is an exciting time
to be a brain researcher. Let’s talk about the word
“God” for a moment. It’s a simple three-letter
word in English, yet this one word is so powerful,
linguistically and psychologically, that it is used to invoke
military courage, to promote feelings of nationalism, and even to justify war and atrocity. The hypothetical omission of this one word
by a president of the United States, the failure to simply say
“God bless America,” would likely cause their public
approval ratings to plummet. Whatever your metaphysical beliefs are, the literal fact is that the trajectories
of lives and nations swing on the hinge
of this one word: “God.” To think about God, either
through construction or negation, you have to deploy abstract reasoning. The very principles
that are intrinsically bound up in any conceivable definition
of the word “God” include elements
of mystery and unknowing. These very types of abstract principles are precisely what land us
in the prefrontal cortex of the brain. I have to step back and think
about this sometimes, that we have inside the bones of our head an electrical piece of meat (Laughter) that’s generating abstract ideas
about divine nature. The nucleus accumbens is located
a little bit lower in the brain, in a region called the subcortex. The subcortex is more ancient
than the prefrontal cortex in terms of the evolutionary
time spans for its development. The nucleus accumbens
is the brains’ pleasure center. It helps positively reinforce
environments and behaviors that are rewarding to you and that are beneficial to you. I have to smile when I think
about how in the New Testament, when Jesus describes heavenly rewards, we are illuminating the biological
embodiment of these ancient metaphors. When our study participants were
instructed to think about a savior, about being with their
families for eternity, in short, when they were thinking
about their heavenly rewards as they imagined them, the brains and their
bodies physically respond. A classic hymn in the religious
movement of Joseph Smith describes the Spirit of God
like a fire burning. If you haven’t ever felt it before, it’s actually a wonderful warm glow. It makes you want to do good and be good. It may be the emotion that moral psychologist
Jonathan Hite refers to as elevation. The frontal attention regions are probably acting in concert
with the nucleus accumbens in order to amplify the phenomenal
content of this religious experience. This so is an area where we will
continue to do extended research in order to better understand
the dynamics of this neural system as it interacts with religious psychology. In addition to the biology that supports
ecstatic religious experience, we were also curious about how social behavior
is influenced by the brain on God. One possibility that we considered
is that perhaps our study participants would demonstrate
an in-group authority bias if they were asked to compare the teachings of their
own religious leaders with the teachings
from other faith traditions. We designed a spiritual quotation’s task in which participants were presented
with a spiritual teaching, and next to it, with a picture of the person
who made the statement. They were then asked to rate
how meaningful the teaching was and also how strongly they felt
the Spirit in response to that teaching. Sources for these teachings were either from an in-group
religious authority figure, in the case of our study,
those included two Mormon apostles, Diederich Dorf and Jeffrey Holland, and the president of the LDS Church
at the time of the study, Thomas Monson. The out-group religious figures included Pope Francis,
Desmond Tutu and Billy Graham, three non-Mormon Christian leaders. Because this was an experiment though, we threw in a little bit of a twist. It turns out that none of the teachings
were from their attributed sources. (Laughter) We collected quotations
from the writings of C.S. Lewis. (Laughter) (Cheers) He’s sometimes referred to
in Mormonism as a 13th apostle. We randomized these teachings
across all of the trials. And we asked the participants
to rank how meaningful they were, how strongly they felt the Spirit, and what we saw was so beautiful from the point of view
of cognitive science. Believing Mormons consistently
ranked the teachings of their own leaders as more meaningful
and as more spiritually evocative than the teachings
of out-group authority figures even though in reality,
they were all from the same source. To further explore the way that social behavior is influenced
by the brain on God, we had our participants
complete this task twice: once at the beginning
of their study session, and a second time, following
a 30-minute period of prayer, of scripture study
and of religious devotion. This now is the
audience-participation moment. It’s always fun to see what people guess the effects of feeling
the Spirit are on social judgments. So, option number one is that after a 30-minute period
of prayer and scripture study that our participants became more biased
against out-group authority figures. Option two is that they became
less biased and more generous. And option three is that we saw no changes
in the behavior that we were observing. Now I want everybody to be really brave. (Laughter) Who thinks that option number one was what we saw? Okay. Who thinks that option number two,
a decrease in the bias, is what we saw? Who thinks that option number three, held case that there was no change
in the behavior we observed? And how about option four, which is that you’re too nervous to
make a guess about religion publicly? (Laughter) What we saw is that after a 30-minute
period of personal spiritual practice, our study participants became
more generous to the out-group. They arranged their teachings
as more meaningful and reported to feel the Spirit
more strongly from them than they had at the beginning
of the study session. There are several possible mechanisms that could be driving
the behaviors that we observe. It’s very likely, for example, that principals from the psychology
of attachment theory are participating in this authority bias. There are also elements of classical
conditioning that might be at play here. Biologically speaking, when dopamine is released
through the brain, it may be driving an increase
in social openness. As is most often the case in science, the full story likely requires
a complex map with multiple layers of explanation. Religion, in my mind, shows a lot of similar
features with sex. The majority of adults do it, they say that it brings meaning
and pleasure into their lives, and in spite of strident advocates
for abstinence only, people are going to do it. (Laughter) No matter how many people say,
“Never be sexual,” humans will be sexual. No matter how many people say,
“Never be religious,” humans will be religious. These are behaviors that spring
from deep evolutionary needs. What I advocate is not for science
to focus its editorializing on the eradication of religious behavior, but rather, like safe sex, on evidence-based best practices for
how we can do religion safely and well. (Cheers) (Applause) Imagine a renewed partnership
between the seminary and the academy to articulate intelligent safe theology. It could do a lot of good
in a world that needs it. We live in an exciting day
of rapidly accelerating discovery. What that means is the formation
of radically disruptive ideas. Interdisciplinary and convergent work
are exponentially driving the pace of our expanded self-understanding. The hope that I would like
to convey to you is that by launching into a new era of religious studies that incorporate
the best tools of our scientific methods, we may win the capacity to further
enlighten our respective cultures and to refine our religious traditions
in ways that make them more worthy of the divine nature
that they claim to represent. This is your brain on God. Any questions? (Applause) Thank you.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

100 Comments

  • Heidi Reis says:

    Mormons believe in immersion baptism so they think their only competition are baptists what they don't know is billy gram doesn't believe baptism of any type saves people

  • Vlasko60 says:

    Future generations will be aware that religious thinking, and all magical thinking in adults, is a disease of the mind. Instead of requiring their leaders to be religious, they will require that candidates prove they don't have the disease, and are rational.

  • Pikaia Gracilens says:

    It’s like he’s speaking only to Mormons; there’s lots of jargon I don’t understand (“feel the spirit,” etc.)

  • Harold Hart says:

    BLOBBOLOGY ?????????

  • DrDress says:

    Wow. He was good. How impressive that he didnt use this resultat to belittle religion but rather intergrate it into dogma.

  • Christian Soldier says:

    What utter rubbish. This clown acts as if there is some kind of problem with religion .

  • 조진아 says:

    Comment section always gets me 😂😂😂😂
    Please just enjoy and take in what you can and leave the negativities

  • Crazed Chloe says:

    This study should have had atheists and people of different religions. The last God brain study I have heard of was discounted when they realize that the parts of the brain they saw that were lighting up were also the parts of the brain that concentration happens in so when they were concentrating on God the concentrating part of the brain was lit up not necessarily the good part.

  • mindvolution says:

    That is, instead of refuting classic religion as a manifestation of primitive consciousness, we should understand the cognitive mechanisms that create religious behavior in the first place and rationalize it.

  • Wah says:

    Hi everyone! I would like to complain about an issue that bothers me now for a while. It has nothing to do with the video that you're watching, but still might be off your interest. I am a fan off you tube and watch quiet a lot of videos and the ones I don't watch straight away, I save in my "watch later" list. In this list used to be a button called " remove watched videos", which since a while has vanished! It used to be very useful and I strongly recommend to you tube to bring it back!! If you should feel the same as me, please copy and paste this in as many comments as possible and who knows, we might get what we want after all! Thanks for your time and participation!!😊

  • Roedy Green says:

    "thinking abstract thoughts about god" is a euphemism for daydreaming about an imaginary god.

  • Ronda S says:

    This doesn’t mean anything without a control group. This isn’t good science. The same areas can light up when reading Shakespeare or T. S. Elliot.

  • Αικα Παπα says:

    Science is the new Religion. What Religion was in the middle ages, an "infallible authority", science is nowadays.
    Same old,
    Same old.
    Humans as a species learn and evolve so slowly and always repeat similar patterns and make the same mistakes.

  • rationalguy says:

    So you're telling me that invisible beings in another realm sends signals to my brain? Pretty sure you better seek treatment for that psychosis if you believe that.

  • Lee Alexander says:

    My horse brings meaning and pleasure into my life but I'd hardly call it a religious experience. Riding into the wilderness to sit in awe of my surroundings while allowing my horse loose to play and graze just might be a religious experience.

  • plein aire says:

    this is my brain on mindful meditation!!!

  • Stephen Caparelli says:

    they are addicted to religion

  • sam harris says:

    For short…God resides not in heaven but in your head! No where to be found but in your head!

  • Tedinski b52 says:

    When I was a child I often wondered why our bodies were so complex with the many organs that we simply could not survive without. But now, thanks to evolutionary science and natural selection all of that is explained away…NOT. But everyone is religious, everyone believes in something, even eons of time and chance.

  • Ptuffgong says:

    Try it with any religion. It'll be the same results. Meaning it's just a physical construct of our own mind. God is man made. We need to move AWAY from religion. Not "study" it more. It's nothing but a hindrance to progress.

  • Leo Wallace says:

    You get better results with self pleasuring.

  • Otto Pike says:

    the intellectual dishonesty of all these athists​ makes me sick. like 50% of the comments here are: OMG, there are like 5,000 other explanations for what he's pointing out- I'm now going to give you a study saying that religion is bad for which there are five thousand other explanations.

  • Sarah Hess says:

    I would not trust scientists or some corrupt governmental official telling me what to believe or not to believe who could well have a harmful agenda. The world is full of crooks,liars and thieves.

  • Bruce Ruttan says:

    Pointless drivel. Utterly devoid of reason or evidence. It's amazing what passes for an argument for those who could not care less about reality.

  • Light Worker says:

    It's time to focus on God's (mother earths) suffering, and how we can minimize it.

  • trick noon says:

    what brain

  • K Diggity says:

    Take this whole survey, change all the religious elements to star wars vs star trek, or political opinions, it would literally be the exact same outcome. People are bias. You proved that. Good job.

  • Walt F. says:

    The word "God" can mean so many different things that it really means nothing at all.

  • SassyHershsey SassyHershey says:

    God and Morman have nothing to do with each other – so you lied in your title – non-Morman here

  • SassyHershsey SassyHershey says:

    This scientist believes he has finished all science and now can tell us – religion and spiritual worlds are not the same. Religion is anti-God generally.

  • Richard Conner says:

    SO THIS IS A MORMON RECRUITING LECTURE. JOSEPH SMITH WOULD BE PROUD.
    MOVING ON TO A MORE UNIVERSAL LANGUAGE, LIKE THE KUNDALINI PROCESS.
    WHICH CULMINATES IN TOTAL TELEPATHIC COMMUNION WITH THE INFINITE ONE.

  • George Roberts says:

    As to God vs. science: The debate is moot. It's been established that their are high spin mono-atomic elements with the body producing photons, room temperature super conductivity. These produce the well known effect of super-conductivity of resistanceless transmission of energy. This also works for conscious energy. Hence: psychic phenomenon and spirituality have a basis in physics/science. Hence: the dichotomy is resolved in that both are true. Some have more natural capability than others. Hence: all the excuse making for both sides is a moot point to the realities of actual physics. The universe is what it is whether we comprehend or not.jj

  • Shane Davenport says:

    These are also the same parts most active in psychosis.

  • Debbie Davis says:

    Research is extremely limited

  • Lawrence Chew says:

    At 3.30+, GOD is referred to as a simple but powerful 3-letter word in ENGLISH. This is hardly surprising given that the letters also stand for Gold Or Dollar. Now you know what the US dollar meant when it says IN GOD WE TRUST.

  • Sam Kim says:

    The speaker does not get the sense of believing in God. The feeling from dopamine? I know which feeling you are talking about but believers do not just pursue that feeling itself. It sometimes just follows. But we pursue the word of God. Defining that feeling as a religious experience and just pursuing that feeling is actually very dangerous and heretic.

  • Paul Howard says:

    The brain doesn't generate ideas. Matter is symbols of meanings. The brain is an idea. Look into the Semantic Interpretation of quantum theory to understand.

  • binudajajah says:

    It seems to me that if evolution is true, and I suppose that it is, then there must be great good and utility in our religiosity and spirituality other wise it would not be part of our story and our evolution

  • Wow Wow says:

    This talk is so unbiased that I can't even tell if he is religious or not.

  • Summum Bonum says:

    So, the brain lights up when imagining things. What an exciting time!

  • Cindy Ingraham says:

    You know it would be really funny if all of y'all highly educated intelligent individuals just pick up a Holy Bible and read what it says specifically it mentions y'all word for word about the highly intelligent people . See for yourselves.

  • Quran Now says:

    Connecting with God .

    It is mentioned in the Quran that mentioning/remembring/glorifying God heals . Because God pays attention to whom mentions him (even in your mind).

    Quran13

    27. Those Who have believed and whose hearts have rest in the remembrance of God/Allah/Yahweh . Verily in the remembrance of God/Allah/Yahweh  do hearts find rest! (28) Those who believe and do right: Joy is for them, and bliss (their) journey's end.

  • Sofi AF says:

    I've been reading the comments for a while and I love seeing what all the people that "don't believe in God" have to say, and then what the ones that do believe reply. Cuz it's just proof of what God does in people's hearts.

  • bob23456 bob says:

    As a Christian I see this not being an enemy of religion. Mind you throughout the Bible God is skeptical of feelings be the arbiter of faith. In fact, when these brain areas don’t light up the idea of faith is beyond importance. Substance of things hoped for evidence of things not seen.

  • mrsuperpatg says:

    No thanks.

  • Sandra Noneofyourbusiness says:

    I am curious if they were to compare other experiences, such as a concert of beautiful music, what the result would be?
    Would seeing people doing secular 'good deeds' such as UNICEF incite a similar response?
    I believe that people 'doing good' for the sake of doing good is more meaningful than people 'doing good' because it will earn them a 'ticket to Heaven'.
    One has an ulterior motive, and the other is entirely altruistic.
    Just my opinion.

  • Hiram Crespo says:

    he's very generous with his own religious group. doesn't get into what happens with ex mormons when they leave the faith and go through withdrawal of the "dopamine" it gives them …

  • Angad Sekhon says:

    I have seen so many Ted Talks where people come and speak topic related to God..but then they explain brain and some of them aliens or stars. Why are you making things so difficult? You are firstly putting a pie in the plate and then discussing all around its textue its look..instead of eating it and see how it actually tastes. Religion and God are not that difficult if you try to understand with open eyes and more than that an open mind. Its us humans who have made it complicated by making prostants,catholics etc in christians, shia and sunnis in muslims and many other in hindus. Human race is One. HE recogonises us as One because that One is inside everyone. To know HIM you have to call HIM like you call your mom dad with full devotion and true heart. HE will listen to it only inside you not anywhere else. You go to church or any temple to see may be one day your heart and mind will connect with HIM inside. In millions only few are able to do that.

  • Dan Jakubik says:

    As a science minded atheist and skeptic, I see the aim here of this scientist is to better define religious behavior, not to eradicate it from society. The location here is interesting. Salt Lake City , Utah. Headquarters of the mormons, the church of latter day saints.

  • Dan Jakubik says:

    His ending thoughts are carefully considered.

  • Dan Jakubik says:

    So, this was an audience of atheists, in Salt Lake City, Utah of all places.

  • Dan Jakubik says:

    A decidedly unbiased presentation about religion and the brain.

  • Roger Roger says:

    So, he is suggesting that we need to redefine religion/god.  Is it because religion is its current form is unsustainable because there is no evidence for God's existence and that it has been proven that the stories in the bible given as true are actually not true? I see this as an attempt to try to salvage the good that can be cherry picked out of religion and put it into some form that is more palatable.

  • John Dossey says:

    So in other words god is a type of drug! All these poor people need rehab!!

  • science1941 says:

    Your 'Brain' is nothing more than a 'Battery' that's why we have to sleep to re-charge our battery. Where is memory? Where is Consciousness? How do we remember? How do we recall? We are able to reach into the *ETHER for the information. Once the information is out in the *Ether it is able to be used by all of the Universe, so peeps use you words and thoughts very carefully, just like Jesus talk us, Get it?

  • K A Nesiah says:

    Primitive definition of religion. Religion is a psychological condition that fits with the human condition. If not Islam or Christianity, it will be Democracy, Communism, cultural Brands like Feminism or even consumer Brands like Android. Any Brand will do. The brain doesnt have a built in mechanism to differentiate.

  • cro4591 says:

    I long for an evolution beyond Mythology.

  • cro4591 says:

    I don't agree that religion or spirituality is innate.
    It is taught.
    Empathy is innate.

  • Alan Alldredge says:

    Point 1. Can we have brain activity as in moving particles AND Special Relativity's immobile static surfaces? Any neurological description OF God via the brain first must accept metaphysically, that the brain exists apart from physically objective causality. THAT alone frames and nests this talk INTO a theistic or at least Platonic domain.
    Point 2. The true belief claim TO a religious doctrine is a category error IF discussing theism. It only points to cultural/historical belief systems. There's nothing to gain from this. It's bad science for those with bad philosophy OF science. The talk is "Your Brain on God" not "your brain on religion".
    Point 3. The brain is not electrical meat. It is elector-mechanical "meat". This brings light to the frequency dependence and not the linearity from which we form memory and meaning.
    Point 4. We can make the same conclusion for the atheist "Your Brain on Atheism"? Equally low value correlations would be gathered IF wishing to bring light to the non-existence OF God. We are only achieving a behavioral basis point that cuts both ways.
    Point 5. I did appreciate his last point. But we should just end with "This is your brain on Belief".

  • Alabama Mothman says:

    Coming from people that will blow up the planet, that means absolutely nothing to people with intelligence.

  • shaggy bail says:

    … Just do a line of coke, them ol dopamine's will will kick in! Light up the Brain like a Christmas tree!…LOL!

  • Arch Linux says:

    Ever see the movie limitless? Yeah that's what real Christian brains are like on God. Mormons are psychopaths.

  • Bootstrapper Wilson says:

    This is your brain on god: deluded.

  • The NIFB Jesus says:

    Damn great speaker. Very strong, very smooth, very right on.

  • HE IS ALIVE says:

    Las guerras no son por la religión, claro que no,son malas interpretaciones humanas.Saludos.

  • Betrayed 1914 says:

    so its true they are brain washed

  • Fred Mcelroy says:

    Do these same feelings happen when one believes in Hogwarts?

  • Bootstrapper Wilson says:

    So this is what a self deluded brain is doing electrochemically.

  • Alan Roberts says:

    P so he wants to use evidence-based science to explore non evidence-based Behavior.?.?. I don't know…

  • Matt Wolf says:

    I actually became happier after dropping religion.

  • phillip st says:

    i was expecting to see a frying pan with an egg cooking in it….no ….really…wtf????

  • Fat Jesus and The Zodiac Killer says:

    I want to see their brains when they hear the debunking of their beliefs.

  • Lynn Love says:

    God is the highest gamma wave.

  • kathleen Wharton says:

    WONDERFUL! How very interesting this is! But my Brain on Mormonism totally Shuts Down! My Brain on "Jesus Loves me". Totally Does it! The soft warm Glow!

  • Chrissiela says:

    Interesting that there was no change of opinion/feeling towards Billy Graham, the man most Mormons would probably identify with Protestant Christianity. This result is not surprising to me since it's been my experience that Mormons identify much more strongly with the Catholic Church and Catholic Tradition than with Protestantism, to the point that you frequently hear Mormons say that if the LDS Church doesn't have the authority that it claims to have that this authority is still held by the Catholic Church or the Pope. Either way Protestants are considered apostate and that is who I think Billy Graham represents to most Mormons. So interesting, but not surprising.

  • Drew's Cruise says:

    This would be a failure if they did not compare to deep states of meditation and not tie it only to religion.

  • Bootstrapper Wilson says:

    Leon Nicholas
    I know there are differences between dysfunctional brains and normal ones; these are visible in both electroencephalograms a FMRI scans. My comment was a dismissal of religious interpretations of this speaker. I do not feel shot down. You missed my point and missed me.

  • RisingDawn says:

    You have no basis for your reasoning or morality apart from God.

  • Shutter Eff3ct says:

    I think in near future some scientists will stimulate and tweak brain of some volunteer patients and those will say that have seen god during the experience. The whole religion thing is it only the oldest VR Game on earth. you imagine super divine, powerful angels, super power, miracles and have religion score which will qualify believer for the next levels. Human brain is so powerful and scary.

  • The Growing Lobby says:

    This is fake news this is not a bias.

  • JOSEPH THISTLE says:

    Why does scientists spend so much time trying to dispute god

  • Ben Johnstone says:

    I guess anyone can host a TEDx
    Psudeo-scientific waste of time

  • Chris Dell'Acqua says:

    this guy really needs to start doing research beyond the Utah state line.

  • Fabian K says:

    doesnt make it real

  • Phil Kallahar says:

    Thank 'god' the non religious is the fastest growing demographic in the world. Then u can do studies, scans & talks on something worthwhile

  • Paige Auker says:

    Stopped watching this after two minutes.

  • Selim Souidi says:

    All religions in the world originally originate from The One, Living, Sustainung, All Knowing, Almighty,…., Supreme Being who from the begining of mankind revealed Himself to the most pious, rightous and loving human beings called prophets and saints and He still does this today, becuase He was always a living and communicating God and will always be. There were aproxx. 124.000 prophets throughout the history of mankind who all teached and preached the SAME philosophie, which the Lord bestowed upon them trough revelation, which is not the same as inspiration or constructing your own thoughts. It is a powerful transzedental experience and one can not force it to happen. It happens if God the Almighty decrees to cause this phenomenon within the human psyche. It comes like a wave and you can not controll it or create it by yourself. And the most important part about it is, that through this spiritual experience God teaches men what He did not know. He reveals to him the unseen. It means that God directly speaks to you as if you are percieving a real person talking to you. Accompanied by the most highest feelings of love and highness that one can not even imagine. The people you conducted the study with, I am very sure of this but in the End God knows better than me, God does not talk to them. Sure they are praying and engaging in religious activities but that is something completely different than the transzendental phenomenon I just described. The Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of God be upon him) even teached, that the organ a human being recognizes His Creator with is his brain. And that makes totally sense even from a neuroscientific perspective because everything we percieve is with our brains. May it be physical(with our two eyes) or transzendental(with the third eye). I know the guy speaking and presenting the results did not claimed that God does not exist, but it seemed as if he wants to reduce the percieving of God on brain chemistry rendering it an illusion. A person who is blind and can not see the sun, still knows and is convinced that it exists, due to the processes happening in his brain. If one would measure his brain activity and tell him look, what you are percieving is not real, you can not even see what you claim to feel, yet you believe it exists. It's just your brain creating an Illusion. Always remember there can never be a contradiction between the word of God (revelation) and His creation (the universes, the laws of nature, dimensions…) I would highly encourage the researcher to investigate more in Islam when conducting the studies. You just grasped the surface of an area which is totally unknown to our neuroscientific understanding.

    God bless and have a nice day

  • NothingMaster says:

    This is some truly disturbing hogwash; scientific research money spent on baseless assumptions and unadulterated crapola.

  • Agnes Philomena says:

    I believe one of the Greek root words for the power of the Holy Spirit could be translated as an equivalent of the modern word "Dynamite." In other words, the ancients knew that worship of God is literally an incendiary, explosive phenomenon, and that authoritative, canonical teaching is necessary . . . sort of like harnessing the power of the atomic nucleus.

  • Darren Seabolt says:

    This is more about religion than God, we already know God exist. I'm not religious and I know God exist.

  • The Doodling Dino says:

    Stunning. Bravo.

  • Redrock YogiMomma says:

    Fascinating!!!! Goooooo UTES!!! Whoot!!! Whoot!!!!

  • HOWER POWER - GAMING says:

    Dopamine is a chemical, and as thought, gods and spiritual nonsense is, and always only will be in… the mind.

  • saxy Ricks says:

    This is your brain on God? So, God = dopamine? Am I oversimplifying? Have any LDS General Authorities watched this. Would they be willing to comment on it?

  • Robert D. Moore says:

    yea, utter imagination who wouldn't let go of it and virus of god delusion took control of their frontal as brainwashed is harder than to remove a splinter from an eye.

  • rsl6767 says:

    Religion is not innate… it is taught, and extremely unnecessary. It's a primitive form of social behavior that is now social dysfunction.

  • Ten to the Negative 33 says:

    Religion is a placebo that triggers deep emotional response.

  • Cryptameria * says:

    Wonderful talk! Keep up the great research

  • chris anderson says:

    Mormonism is a cult.

    Evolutionism turns out to be a cult as well. For instance, cults oppose critical thinking. Evolutionists oppose the idea that anything other than evolution could be true. Evolutionists do not allow individuals to study anything other than evolution. Evolutionists are forced to study only evolution, not intelligent design, creationism, etc.

    Secondly, cults penalize members for leaving them. In many cases, PhD scientists in various scientific specialties that leave the doctrine of evolution to promote intelligent design or creationism lose their positions at universities, careers, their ability to publish in scientific journals, and the like.

    Thirdly, cults follow leader(s) and the leaders cannot be questioned. In evolutionism, Darwin is a leader that cannot be questioned. The elite, materialistic scientists have the final say. Anyone who questions the doctrine of the elite evolutionists are considered to be foolish, fake scientists, and the like.

    These are just a few of the examples that evolutionism is a cult. If you believe in evolution, did you know you were actually joining a cult?

    I have studied Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism, Evolution, Intelligent Design, and Creationism.

    Have you only studied evolution and been told to only study evolution? If so, you have been manipulated by the cult of evolutionary thought.

  • Jeff says:

    Though I know this isn’t the point of this TED Talk…. but Mormonism is not Christianity….. Do not confuse the two.

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