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High illness loads (physical and social) do not always force high levels of mass religiosity

  • Gregory S. Paul (a1)

The hypothesis that high levels of religiosity are partly caused by high disease loads is in accord with studies showing that societal dysfunction promotes mass supernaturalism. However, some cultures suffering from high rates of disease and other socioeconomic dysfunction exhibit low levels of popular religiosity. At this point, it appears that religion is hard pressed to thrive in healthy societies, but poor conditions do not always make religion popular, either.

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N. Barber (2011) A cross-national test of the uncertainity hypothesis of religious belief. Cross-Cultural Research 45(3):318–33.

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Behavioral and Brain Sciences
  • ISSN: 0140-525X
  • EISSN: 1469-1825
  • URL: /core/journals/behavioral-and-brain-sciences
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