Campfire rituals of focused attention created Baldwinian selection for enhanced working memory among our Homo sapiens ancestors. This model is grounded in five propositions: the emergence of symbolism occurred late in the archaeological record; this emergence was caused by a fortuitous genetic mutation that enhanced working memory capacity; a Baldwinian process where genetic adaptation follows somatic adaptation was the mechanism for this emergence; meditation directly affects brain areas critical to attention and working memory; and shamanistic healing rituals were fitness-enhancing in our ancestral past. Each proposition is discussed and defended. Supporting evidence and potential future tests are presented.
Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.