- This is a rather informal and prolix account of the genesis, motivation, aims and successes of a research project into beliefs about the soul, and the consequences of these beliefs. It also describes the genesis of courses at Rutgers based on the results of this research.
- Ogilvie is a partly retired psychologist and – if his appearances in "Ogilvie (Daniel M.) & Hamilton (Leonard W.) - Soul Beliefs: Causes and Consequences" are anything to go by – somewhat past his prime (a little bit embarrassingly so in my view, though maybe he always had a rather bumbling style).
- He is of a camp with the New Atheists – in particular the Four Horsemen (Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, Daniel Dennett, and Christopher Hitchens).
- However, he thinks their confrontational “you bunch of idiots” approach is counter-productive.
- He set a group of research students to investigate1 the following problems (in a manner which is somewhere between sociology, psychology and experimental philosophy):-
- the history of and current perspectives on mind/body dualism including the idea that children are natural dualists,
- contemporary cognitive theories of religion,
- the history of hominid evolution2 particularly the evolution3 of the hominid brain,
- case studies of people who are born again and people who have lost their faith,
- comparative religions, social and cultural conditions conducive to belief and disbelief, and
- the onset of the "timetraveling self" in childhood.
See Link (Defunct).
Footnote 1: This investigation is sometimes genuine research, and sometime just to remedy areas of ignorance on Ogilvie’s part.
Text Colour Conventions (see disclaimer)
- Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2020
- Mauve: Text by correspondent(s) or other author(s); © the author(s)