I'm hoping we can stick to the topic and really think about this, instead of this turning into a "let's argue and prove god does or doesn't exist" thing. Stay with me. :)
I do think there may be a genetic component or some psychological predisposition that is key to belief and disbelief in god. It's similar to when brain scans are done to observe differences in brain activity between Democrats and Republicans, the same has been done for believers vs. atheists. They tend to respond to specific themes/topics differently, and it seems likely that they process information differently, even in daily life without the brain scan. As an atheist, I see this all the time - believers are moved by certain things in ways that I'm not. Of course, the question is, are those differences the result of belief/disbelief, or are there also differences in the first place that lead to differing conclusions on the existence of god? I would say yes to both.
I think psychological disposition, and then subsequent development, can lead to either more acceptance or rejection of illogical belief systems. (And I only mean logical in strictest sense of concrete, objectively observable evidence and proven givens to move a statement beyond assumption or belief. For example, proving water exists.) For many/most, the experience of religion and other evocative experiences linked to belief in god, or the supernatural in general, are more powerful than doubt. For others, doubt, reason, and logic win by a landslide. I discovered that I was in the latter category at a young age, despite being from a Christian family and attending Christian schools. And the question has always been asked of me, "Why do you think you turned out to be atheist?" This is a huge part of my answer. "It's possible that something about my brain works differently."
What do you think?
Most Helpful Guy
I think that what you say makes sense. We all face the world differently and see things differently. It may be easier for some people to believe in supernatural stuff in certain situations while others will seek a logical explanation for it, it's similar to what make each one of us have different personalities.
I think that a good example of it is when we consider a life changing happening. Some religious people will say that their faith got stronger after this happening and others will abandon faith completely.
We can't ignore the way people were raised though. When we're born in a religious country or family, normally our world view grows with religion and beliefs being part of it. As a child you can't choose and you may grow up believing in what your parents or society taught you. Continuing to believe in it or not after you grow up will depend entirely on your personal view of the world and of what happens around you.
I'll take myself as an example. I was born in a traditional religous family (protestant) in a country where most people consider religion as being importart. As a child I was taught that there was no other way, that the existence of God was an unquestionable certainty, that evolution was a mistake and shouldn't be taken seriously, stuff like that.
However, I was never religious. The things that I did were the things that I was taught to do, but I never saw any meaning in them. I never felt that happiness that the believers claimed to feel and as I grew up I started questioning many things and I saw that religion couldn't provide all the answers and many of them were nonsense. I think that I don't need to say what happened next.
The funny thing is that my brother was raised the same way that I was and today he's a devote religious man and I don't believe in it anymore since long ago.
So many things I want to say... but I think that this is enough for now (I hope you read it xD)1
Most Helpful Girl
It's possible, the brain is still a mystery for the most part. I personally think it's more directly involved with conditioning. I'm agnostic, for the most part. I was raised in a casual Christian home. I wasn't forced to go to church or disciplined because I questioned things. The older I get, the more I explore history and the more I question things. This is where what you are thinking comes into play, I suppose! No matter how much I learn, a belief of something I have no proof of still persists.0