Letters to the Editor

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The God Engine

I thoroughly enjoyed your article “The God Engine” in the September/October 2018 Skeptical Inquirer.

I felt there was one factor in author James Alcock’s explications of reinforcement of religious beliefs that was not addressed enough for my liking, related to his sixth factor, group identity. I missed seeing a mention of a powerful evolutionary aspect: reproductive advantage.

Religious groups provide social interactions that may provide more mate selection opportunities, and often the religious beliefs themselves contain a directive to be fruitful. This may result in more persistence of religious beliefs because of reproductive advantage, which additionally would have a positive feedback effect producing more and more believers.

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