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Department of Social Anthropology


Prof Tanya Luhrmann (Stanford University)

Local theory of mind: why people experience the same god differently in different parts of the world

 Ben Rushton)The substantial achievement of the cognitive science of religion has been to demonstrate that evolved, “natural” qualities of our minds readily generate intuitions about supernatural agency. Yet it is also true that Christians also report that faith is hard: that it takes effort. This talk makes the case that in many ways, this effortful attention involves an attention to the mind and to mental events; that different practices of attending to mental events shape mental experience; that different cultures and different theologies emphasize mind and mental process in distinctive ways and that this has consequences for the way people experience God. The talk supports this argument with comparative data from new charismatic evangelical Christians in the US, Ghana and India.


All are welcome to attend.

Monday, 18 January, 2016 - 17:00 to 19:00
Event location: 
Old Divinity School Lecture Theatre, St John's College