Recent polls report that 96 percent of Americans believe in God, and 73 percent believe that angels frequently visit Earth. People are turning to religion in greater numbers than in recent generations. Even with the rise of science, technology, and secular education, people believe. Why?
Drawing on studies that bring scientific fact to such phenomena as out-of-body experiences, coincidence, and extraordinary perception, science historian Michael Shermer dissects the workings of the human mind, exploring how and why humans put their faith in a higher power, create rules of morality, turn to apocalyptic myths, and negotiate compromises between science and religion. In this new edition, Shermer explores findings and theories from neuroscientists, as well as recent polls on religious belief, to illuminate how reason and skepticism can shape our understanding of the universe and out place in it. An all-new afterword covers the latest scientific research on how the brain make us believers or skeptics.