Some issues concerning applications of naturalistic paradigm to the study of religion

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Kinga Kowalczyk-Purol

Abstract

Viewing religion as a product of evolution already has yielded a new and interesting hypotheses, which could help to integrate entire heritage of scientific study of religion. Nonetheless, there are some objections toward this program. First, despite the fact that evolutionary theories of religion are inherently interdisciplinary, its integration with sociological, anthropological and historical studies should be improve in the future. Second, phenomenological descriptions (that is individual religious experiences) are neglected by Darwinians. This fact could negatively affects explanatory potential of this approach. Finally, opponents of analyzed paradigm state that evolutionary hypotheses have still low level of confirmation. It stems from a small number of conducted empirical investigations on evolutionary roots of religion. Nevertheless, application of Darwinian tools to the study of religion remains a very promising scientific venture.

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