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Listen to Michael Graziano discuss "Does the Soul Still Matter?" on To The Best of Our Knowledge

Watch/listen to the talk "Consciousness and the Social Brain" (with special guest Kevin the orangutan) given at the University of Quebec.

Read the short article based on this book, "Why We See Spirits and Souls," published by the Templeton Foundation.

God Soul Mind Brain

By Michael S. A. Graziano

Questions of the spirit world are usually onsidered to be scientifically unapproachable. We humans are somehow, for reasons unknown, aware of ourselves and of the world around us. We perceive soul and consciousness and aware-ness in each other. Ghosts, spirits, protecting angels, gods—most people claim to have sensed at one time or another the presence or warmth or intent of these disembodied minds. Science is now widely accepted to be a useful tool for studying the physical domain, but the spiritual domain is almost universally assumed to be out-side the limits of physicality, of science, of any mechanistic understanding. Of all branches of science, neuroscience is the only one that has seriously challenged the dualistic view that the universe is divisible into matter and spirit.

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“A brave neuroscientist rushes in where angels fear to tread. A challenging yet accessible, charming and thoroughly enjoyable book – it provokes thoughts in a way that reminds one of the reasons for books to exist.”
Robert Sapolsky, author of Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers

“In the Science and Religion debate, few remember to focus on the creators of both: the brain.  God, Soul, Mind, Brain: A Neuroscientist’s Reflections on the Spirit World discusses the role of the mind in perception of the world and the importance of faith. Dedicated to the study of consciousness and why it’s more important than the science versus religion debate, Michael Graziano comes to readers with plenty of food for thought on how to look at the world…. A fine take, very highly recommended for any psychology collection.”
—Midwest Book Review

Read an excerpt on religion from the book in The Huffington Post

Read Michael's April 29 blog post in the Huffington Post, "The Spirit Constructed in the Brain."

Written for the general public, God Soul Mind Brain explores the controversial relationship between science and religion by first dismissing the “science versus religion” debate as outdated and unnecessary. The cutting-edge field of social neuroscience explains how our perceptions of our own consciousness, of other people’s minds, and of spirits and gods depend on machinery in the brain that evolved to make us socially intelligent animals. In clear prose without technical jargon, Graziano discusses his and others’ findings in this 20-year-old field of study, and the implications for human spirituality and religion. By addressing head-on the fundamental issues of human consciousness, religion, and God, and how these elements relate to the science of the brain, Graziano presents an entirely new view of religion and science.

“A beautifully crafted, tightly scripted account of how the far-flung legions of the brain's neurons give rise to social awareness and our notions of soul, religion and God.” --Christof Koch, Caltech professor of Neuroscience, author of The Quest for Consciousness

“Essential reading for the devout, the agnostic, and the atheist. In tackling the question of the religious brain, Graziano is respectful, sincere, and scientifically plausible. This might even be an Important Book.”—Sam Wang, author of Welcome to Your Brain
 
“Accessible and wonderful... An even-handed approach to religion and a huge improvement over angry scientists who are deeply offended by the perdurance of religion. The book gives theologians much to ponder.” —Thomas John Hastings, Director of Research, Princeton Center of Theological Inquiry

“Brilliantly written, exciting, and entertaining reading. Theologians could profit from Graziano’s account.”—Friederike Nüssel, Professor of Systematic Theology, University of Heidelberg
                                                                                      
“Lucid and engaging…. Moves with pace and humor, and gives an intellectually honest account of the science.”—Philip Johnson-Laird, author of Mental Models

“Do we know the origins of Gods and ghosts? In this well-written book, Graziano makes the bold case that new discoveries in social neuroscience can illuminate human spiritual experience.”—Terry Sejnowski, Francis Crick Professor, Salk Institute; Professor of Biological Sciences, UC San Diego

 

CATEGORY: Nonfiction
PAGES: 164
TRIM:
ISBN: 978-1-935248-11-8
PRICE: $13.95 / Paperback Original
Pub Date: September 2010

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