Re: Extropianism & Theology & dopamine

Timothy Bates (
Sat, 27 Feb 1999 18:30:55 +1100

Spike Jones (as usual) said numerous wonderful things including:
> I have seen it from the opposite point of view than most extropians:
> children of religious parents are born utterly lacking the religion
> gene. These parents are often emotionally crushed, self blaming,
> etc. Its very sad. No amount of brainwashing will reverse the
> condition, and instill the religion meme, if one is born without the
> religion gene.

Well, now there are two of us willing to search for this gene ;-)

> If we master ways to create the right dopamines, one
> should be able to control ones religious beliefs, and sexual orientation
> for that matter. Consider: there is a special kind of dopamine that
> is associated with religion. I once could literally make myself high
> without ingesting chemicals, but by... well never mind how. But if
> we could make a pill that releases those feel-good chemicals without
> resorting to religion, well, there you have it.

I kind of agree, but the trick is that the problem may not be that the system is not functioning at the correct levels (which selective DA could help), but that certain computations are being done differently and that the feeling good centers don't recognize philosophical insights as a rewarding event.

I guess that we could run a Dopamine cable from the <thinking-about-the- -universe-as-a-vast-empty-mindless-space> module down to the <feeling-really-good> module ... that might be fun ;-)

tim ;-)