I read a very provocative theory the other day on the origin of religion.  The book claimed that hunters and gatherers lived in sophisticated tribal nations during the transition to civilization and basically created Yahweh and other gods to manipulate resources out of early settled communities.  Anyone else hear about this?

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The Invention of God: The Natural Origins of Mythology and Religion by Bill Lauritzen 

Has any of you read this theory. I read it and it is far fetched as any you have mentioned. Any opinions on this book?

 

So many different religions have originated in different parts of the world, over a long period of time, that it is impossible that all of them have the same cause for their origin. There are two components for all religions, one is god and worship and the other is a code of conduct. Both the Bible and the Qurran show these components. Besides these, there could be other local causes or components for a religion of that particular locality. I do not believe that any single book can tell the entire story of all religions. 

The book I mentioned was the reason for belief in a god or gods, not the beginnings of religion. I got off subject a bit. I suppose it is just as difficult to find when man kind decided it was the supernatural that guided events in there lives.

I have never heard of this. I agree with Lightnin' Lives. My general understanding and theory is that religions were made due to lack of scientific knowledge, the need to have a purpose in life and the refusal to accept death as the final end.

I always felt they were something to do with how we learn as a baby.

Things are new, inexplicable and  strange to start with. Two or three of these strange things are comforting. They teach you to use words, which means you can begin to understand. They seem to know everything there is, at least as far as your baby mind can see.

 

At this point you are kinda programmed to accept there is (a) an explicable order to all you don't understand and (b) your parents are the main source for the explaination. (c) Grandad and Grandma taught them in their turn.

Little kids don't know to question, they just know mum knows.

 

If someone ever tries to think logically of a parent that taught the first parent . . . things like gods pop into the equation "naturally". Obviously due to faulty logical training, which you can also blame of "first grandma and grandad".

Religion is essentially no different from mythology.  Judaism-Christianity absorbed many elements from mythologies in Egypt, Greece, Persia and adapted it to suit their purpose.  When people stop taking Judaism, Christianity and Islam seriously, then it'll stop being a religion and become merely mythology.

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