Science has shown us clearly that one level of belief in god and overall spirituality is shaped not only by a mix of family environment and upbringing–which is not surprising–but also by our genes. Twin studies conducted around the world in the U.S., the U.K., the Netherlands and Australia show a 40 to 50 percent genetic component to belief in god. (See [https://www.popsci.com/science/article/2013-08/what-twins-reveal-about-god-gene/](https://www.popsci.com/science/article/2013-08/what-twins-reveal-about-god-gene/))
So unbelievers fall into 2 groups: those that are unbelievers because their genes tipped the scales to unbelief and those where this was not the case (i.e. there was some other reason for their unbelief). In the former case, god determined that they don’t believe in him when he decided that they should have certain genes – they did not choose to become unbelievers of their own free will.
Edit: Many people replying to this post are conflating “influenced by” and “determined by”. For these people, consider the following analogy:
There are many factors that can affect the likelihood of a plane crashing. One such factor is the amount of cargo that is loaded onto an aircraft. If a plane crashes, it could be that the plane crashed because it was carrying too much cargo (i.e. without the extra cargo, the plane wouldn’t have crashed). If a plane crashes because it was carrying too much cargo, then the person loading the cargo determined that the plane crash
There are many factors that can affect the likelihood of a person becoming an unbeliever. One such factor is whether the person has a particular set of genes. If a person is an unbeliever, it could be because he was carrying a particular gene (i.e. without these genes, the person would have been a believer). If a person is an unbeliever because god gave him certain genes, then god determined that he is an unbeliever
Why would “god” decide that some people wouldn’t be believers? Because he likes to play with people?
Any religious person who believes their god is omnipotent and omniscient can’t argue that free will exists, so their worldview says that their god knew who would and wouldn’t believe in him the second he created the universe. Their god knows who is going to hell and made those people specifically for the purpose of going to hell. They never had chance to go to heaven because their fate was sealed the second god saw their whole life planned out. That’s the argument I would have made if I wanted to argue that unbelief is predetermined but that’s just me.
This is one of the most illogical things I have ever read.
but what does unbelief mean and why is it even relevant. the text itself says that those outside the church religion or “belief” are a law unto themselves. the question is, the law that you have within yourselves, do you obey it and have a clear conscience, see people try to say they are good people even by their own standards we all fail, so its silly for people to get mad at religion for the standards of religion but even when religion itself says its your standards people still fail
One major issue with the study:
The 3% atheists in the US figure is based on a Pew poll from a number of years ago, but that figure only includes people who directly identify as atheists.
When asked “do you believe in god”, that figure jumps 3 fold to nearly 10%, and when asked about various religious beliefs distinguishing between “god” and the “universe”, the figure goes up considerably from there as well (don’t remember the figure for that though).
So the study appears to be predicated on data from polling which changes dramatically on the wording of the question, and it appears the figures they used are not at all representative of the reality.
So whatever difference there is between various populations and the incidence of these specific genes in relation to belief, it could very easily turn out to be within the margin of error.
If someone were to look at the study directly and plug the more accurate dataset into their formulas, it should be pretty apparent one way or another if it exceeds the MOE.
Edit: removed a y
Does anyone have a link to the original studies? It’s hard to take an article seriously that doesn’t reference its sources, yet claims that “The conclusion is unavoidable: faith is definitely influenced by genes.”.
One thing I’m curious about is if they also tested for other non-scientific beliefs. Do the researchers also conclude that belief in, say, astrology has a genetic component? Belief in fortune tellers? Healing crystals? Basically, is the genetic component (if such really exists) a predisposition to belief in gods or rather a general susceptibility to accept non-scientific claims?
I don’t have an issue discussing the premise, but a couple of studies don’t really prove anything scientifically
Why fiddle with our genes to create believers and non believers when he could just reveal himself to all so that we would all be believers?
>In the former case, god determined that they don’t believe in him when he decided that they should have certain genes – they did not choose to become unbelievers of their own free will
You’ve jumped from predisposition/tendency (more likely) to compulsion. Being predisposed to a thing doesn’t negate free will. If it did, then the whole Western legal system falls apart.
Take social aspects – A person who was abused as a child may be more likely to become a child-abuser themselves. Someone born into poverty may be more like to commit certain types of crime.
Or biological aspects – a person may have a [genetic disposition to commit violent crimes ](https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-29760212). However, as this doesn’t overwhelmingly compel them to commit the crimes, they are still held responsible.
Comments are closed.