The main characteristics of different belief systems

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The main characteristics of different belief systems

Jordan Grafman May 31, The evidence from cognitive neuroscience research indicates that performance on different social belief tasks evokes considerable overlap in the brain regions they activate.

But that begs the question whether the principles of knowledge representations of beliefs are similar to other forms of knowledge representation for example, the rules by which words might be stored in the brain. To give a simple example, there is evidence that two languages learned at the same time have greater representational overlap in the brain than languages learned sequentially.

That is, would acquiring knowledge about two belief systems sequentially in time result in their representation in the brain being relatively separated whereas two belief systems learned at the same time would have a much more overlapping representation in the brain?

The main characteristics of different belief systems

To stay with this analogy, language representations can be used to convey information to others about ourselves, the world, facts, etc. If we know a second language and we travel to the country where that language is dominant, we speak that second language for the same essential purposes as we would our first language.

But how many people would learn a second belief system for the same purpose as the first belief system? If you practice Christianity as your religion in the United States, but then traveled to Israel, would you convert to Judaism in order to appear more socially adept in Israel?

Belief systems are, to date, not used in such a flexible manner by most people. There are few reports in the neuropsychology literature of one type of belief being affected by brain damage, but not others.

Instead, we may find a set of beliefs affected by a similar underlying impairment. This differential impairment could lead to the inappropriate inference that belief systems themselves have a modular representation and can be selectively impaired. To make matters more complicated, certain cognitive and social rules tend to be recruited by a range of belief systems whereas other cognitive or social rules, such as punishment for moral violations or the acceptance of supernatural phenomena, may vary widely by practitioners of different belief systems.

Although using cognitive tasks to determine whether the knowledge contained in different belief systems might be represented in a similar or dissimilar way is useful, it should also be noted that brains across cultures are not all that morphologically or functionally distinct, suggesting that some brain regions and networks should show the same pattern of activity in response to performance on tasks reflecting knowledge from different belief systems, whereas other brain regions and networks might display unique patterns of activation reflecting the unique characteristics of a particular belief system when those characteristics would be provoked by unique task demands or cues.

Being beholden to a specific deity would take on a level of importance that supersedes the personal importance of the shared principles of different belief systems. Besides the life-death implications of this aspect of belief practice, the deity may have the same or greater importance to a practitioner than a parent or partner would have—at least compared to friends or acquaintances.

Hinduism and its beliefs

There is sufficient evidence to indicate that assigning such a role to a belief-derived entity arouses uniquely deep emotions and forms of dependency. Another reason to determine how dissimilar social belief systems are is that some may emphasize primitive elements for example, an eye for an eye of moral adjudication while others may emphasize abstract behavioral judgments for example, complex moral decision-making that indicates the path that the evolution of our belief systems has taken and the road yet to be taken.

From my vantage point, there is nothing more challenging or exciting than exploring the brain basis of human social belief systems. Discover similar content through these related topics and regions.A belief system is a set of mutually supportive beliefs.

The beliefs of any such system can be classified as religious, philosophical, political, ideological, or a combination of these. Philosopher Jonathan Glover says that beliefs are always part of a belief system, and that tenanted belief systems are difficult for the tenants to completely revise or reject.

Buddhism is a nontheistic religion, i.e., it does not believe in a supreme creator being a.k.a. God. Christianity is a monotheistic religion and believes that Christ Is the Son Of God.

Buddhism is an offshoot of Hinduism and is a Dharmic religion. Belief systems are principles that help us to understand and define the world around us.

They are influenced by a number of different things in a person's life and change over time. The major world religions possess doctrines, myths, revelations, ethical and social teachings, rituals, temples, a hierarchy or social institution, priests and priest education, a monastic order or hierarchy and a motivation to convert others and expand geographic influence.

People with religious and spiritual beliefs have special or sacred places that they visit but the sacred places are different for each religion or belief system. Indigenous Australians have many sacred places that are important to them. Religion is a type of belief system, but not all belief systems are religions.

Differentiating religious from nonreligious belief systems is sometimes easy, but other times rather difficult, as demonstrated by the arguments people have over what qualifies as a religion.

5 Major World Religions - See What These Different Religions Believe about God