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Barrett, Justin L., 1971-
Born believers : the science of children's religious belief / Justin L. Barrett
Alternate Title Science of children's religious belief
1st Free Press hardcover ed
New York : Free Press, c2012
book jacket
Location Call Number Status
 3rd Floor  BF723.G63 B37 2012    AVAILABLE
Subject(s) Faith -- Psychology
Child psychology
Children -- Religious life
Psychology, Religious
Physical Description x, 302 p. ; 24 cm
Note Includes bibliographical references (p. 283-292) and index
Summary Developmental psychologist and anthropologist Justin L. Barrett presents a theory that we are predisposed to believe in God from birth. It all begins in the brain. Infants, under the sway of powerful internal and external forces, make sense of their environments by imagining a creative and intelligent agent, a grand controller who makes the sun shine and the night fall. In the chaos of childhood, where so much is out of the child's control, this belief in a morally good creator can bring tremendous comfort and calm. A child's world is then filled with beings who intentionally act upon the environment, maintaining order. Summarizing scientific experiments conducted with children across the globe, Professor Barrett illustrates the ways human beings have come to develop complex belief systems about God's omniscience, the afterlife, and the immortality of deities, and shows how this underlies all of the major world religions, uniting them under one common source.--From publisher description
Contents Secret agents everywhere -- Children in search of a purpose -- Identifying the Maker -- The mind of God -- The nature of God -- Natural religion -- It's OK to be childish -- So stupid they'll believe anything? -- Is atheism unnatural? -- Should you introduce children to God? -- Encouraging children's religious development

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