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July 14, 2017 | History

Conceiving God 1 edition

Conceiving God
J. David Lewis-Williams

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Conceiving God
the cognitive origin and evolution of religion ; with 49 illustrations
David Lewis-Williams

Published 2010 by Thames & Hudson in London .
Written in English.

About the Book

This book is a controversial exploration of the origin of religion in the neurology of the human brain. The author first describes how science developed within the cocoon of religion and then shows how the natural functioning of the human brain creates experiences that can lead to belief in a supernatural realm, beings, and interventions. Once people have these experiences, they formulate beliefs about them, and thus creeds are born. Forty thousand years ago, people were leaving traces in the archaeological record of activities that we can label religious, and the author discusses in detail the evidence preserved in the Volp Caves in France. He also shows that mental imagery produced by the functioning of the human brain can be detected in widely separated religious communities such as Hildegard of Bingen's in medieval Europe or the San hunters of southern Africa.

Table of Contents

Prolegomena : windows on the past and some of the questions they raise
A new way of thinking
From skies to species
A tale of two scientists
Explaining religion
Religious experience
Religious belief
Religious practice
Stone Age religion
Hildegard on the African veld
God's empire strikes back
Epilegomena : of babies and bathwater.

Edition Notes

Includes bibliographical references ( p. [301]-314) and index.


Dewey Decimal Class
Library of Congress
GN799.R4 L49 2010

The Physical Object

320 p. :
Number of pages

ID Numbers

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LC Control Number


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July 14, 2017 Edited by Mek adding subject: Internet Archive Wishlist
October 23, 2010 Created by ImportBot initial import