Scientists Claim Belief In God Can Be Temporarily Weakened With Powerful Magnets
If true, the implications are a bit frightening. Or should they scare you?
According to the UK Daily Mail, scientists are claiming that powerful magnetic stimulation can temporarily strengthen a person's positive feelings toward immigration and weaken their faith in God.
The study by University of York's Dr. Keise Izuma and UCLA's Colin Holbrook was conducted on 38 participates around the age of 21 who claimed to have strong religious and politically conservative beliefs.
The researchers say that after treating their subjects with magnetic stimulation, they were 32.8 percent less likely to believe in God or other spiritual beings and 28.5 percent more positive toward an immigrant who criticized the U.S.
Dr. Izuma explained, "We think that hearing criticisms of your group's values, perhaps especially from a person you perceive as an outsider, is processed as an ideological sort of threat."
The treatment helped remove a person's feeling of being threatened.
Dr. Izuma continued, "As expected, we found that when we experimentally turned down the posterior medial frontal cortex, people were less inclined to reach for comforting religious ideas despite having been reminded of death."
It's obvious from the researchers' conclusions, which were published in the journal Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience http://scan.oxfordjournals.org/, that they viewed belief in God or other spiritual beings as simply a fear response and saw criticism of illegal immigration as being based on fear as well. And by removing fear you could weaken those beliefs.
But are your beliefs simply based on fear, and can true belief in God be altered scientifically?