What is the origin of religious belief

NeurobiologyThe origin of religion

There are people who believe in God - in whatever form. Researchers wonder where these religious thoughts and feelings come from.

How and where religion comes about has not yet been found out by the sciences. Both neurobiology and theology can only make hypotheses and build on them. The neurobiologist Robert-Benjamin Illing from the University of Freiburg im Breisgau takes the view that belief in one or more gods is born out of fear.

"First of all, the thought of a god is perhaps - and I suspect - just a hypothesis that we throw out into the world thanks to our cognitive heritage."
Robert-Benjamin-Illing, neurobiologist

With his great possibilities, people capture their fears in myths and use them to construct religions that are supposed to help them. In addition, everything that our brain processes and interprets in terms of sensory impressions is far from true. Optical illusions are just one example.

"My thesis is that religion cannot simply be found in our genes or in our brain structures because it is based on human language and expressiveness."

Dirk Evers, a systematic theologian from Halle an der Saale adds that religion is formed within our social space in which we humans interact with language. Both speakers agree that there is no area in the brain in which religion can be proven.