Supernatural as Natural: A Biocultural Approach to Religion

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9780131893030: Supernatural as Natural: A Biocultural Approach to Religion
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This book provides a general introduction to the biological and evolutionary bases of religion and is suitable for introductory level courses  in  the anthropology and psychology of religion and comparative religion.

Why did human ancestors everywhere adopt religious beliefs and customs? The presence and persistence of many religious features across the globe and time suggests that it is natural for humans to believe in the supernatural. In this new text, the authors explore both the biological and cultural dimensions of religion and the evolutionary origins of religious features.

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"Supernatural as Natural "examines ways in which our religious beliefs and experiences are products of our biological make-up. This book takes as its fundamental starting point the insight that humans are animals whose primary means of adapting to the world is culture, including religion.

About the Author:

Michael Winkelman, Ph.D. (University of California-Irvine), M.P.H. (University of Arizona) is an Associate Professor in the School of Human Evolution and Social Change at Arizona State University. He served as President of the Anthropology of Consciousness section of the American Anthropological Association, as was the founding President of its Anthropology of Religion Section. His principal publications on shamanism include Shamans, Priests and Witches (1992) and Shamanism (2000).  He has also addressed the role of psychedelic medicines in shamanism in his co-edited Psychedelic Medicine.
John Baker, Dr. Phil. (Universität Hamburg, Germany) is a Professor of Anthropology at Moorpark College. He has authored several papers on the constructive use of altered states of consciousness and on the history and ritual uses of psychoactive substances. He is presently serving as the President of the Society for the Anthropology of Consciousness.

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