Sunday, November 30, 2008

Children born to believe in God

Well, not really, but that's what Dr. Justin Barrett says. Barrett who can be found in the musty halls of Oxford, "claims that young people have a predisposition to believe in a supreme being because they assume that everything in the world was created with a purpose."

Barrett further claims that "young children have faith even when they have not been taught about it by family or at school, and argues that even those raised alone on a desert island would come to believe in God."

It's a cognitive thing for Barrett, who's a psychologist. Children, he says, are born with cognitive tools that lead them to believe in God in order to survive.

Well, maybe not. Barrett is referencing children six and seven years old. He points out that studies show these children "instinctively believe that almost everything has been designed with a specific purpose."

Sorry, Charlie. Children of that age have already been mightily influenced by environmental factors. Our culture has been so inundated with god-talk that no child could reach the age of six or seven and not have been affected by it. Furthermore, "a specific purpose," does not translate to any "god," much less the Christian "God."

Barrett cites another study in which 12-month old babies were surprised when the watched a film showing a rolling ball create a stack of blocks from a disordered heap. Please. One-year old babies are surprised at everything!

All of Barrett's findings are suspect merely on the basis of his funding, much of which came from the Templeton Foundation, which is dedicated to proving the existence of God.

You can read more here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So far NO ONE HAS PROVEN THAT ANY GOD EXISTS!!!! Proof is something that must be capable of being duplicated, not guessed a t or accepted as a matter of belief or faith.
That does not belittle faith. If one believes in something that does not necessarily mean it doesn’t exist, it simply means one believes it does. An opposing view is not necessarily right or wrong either. If one believes prayer does change one’s life or circumstances and does no harm, then it might be beneficial for that person. The problem historically is that people have killed others because of their beliefs. That is harmful and is still going on in our world.
Bob Poris

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