Religion: Mental Religion, 1st Edition

  • Niki Kasumi Clements Rice University
  • Published By:
  • ISBN-10: 0028663608
  • ISBN-13: 9780028663609
  • DDC: 201.615
  • Grade Level Range: 11th Grade - College Senior
  • 417 Pages | eBook
  • Original Copyright 2016 | Published/Released August 2016
  • This publication's content originally published in print form: 2016

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Religion: Mental Religion is part of the Macmillan Interdisciplinary Handbooks series dedicated to the study of religion. Composed of twenty-two thematic chapters, this volume highlights religion, cognition, and the brain. The volume is broken down into five sections that view religious phenomena through different scientific lenses, including evolutionary psychology, evolutionary anthropology, cognitive linguistics, cognition and culture, and neuroscience. This volume strives to represent a variety of religious practices and beliefs as well as a diversity of scientific approaches. The reader is encouraged to engage these different disciplinary perspectives to develop an understanding of the relationship between human cognition and religious experience. The volume also includes bibliographies, filmographies, images, a glossary, and a comprehensive index, all of which aid the reader in exploring this multidisciplinary and relevant field.

Features and Benefits

  • The interdisciplinary nature of these handbooks provides an innovative approach to introducing the field to novices.
  • Film, literature, art, and other lenses are used to help the reader understand concepts and ideas in the study of religion.
  • The handbooks combine the features of an introductory textbook with features of a reference resource to effectively engage and educate the user.
  • Introduces the reader to religion and cognition through various approaches within the brain sciences.
  • Peer-reviewed chapters are written by eminent scholars in the field.
  • Includes a glossary, bibliographies, and summaries for each chapter.
  • 27 images, graphs, and diagrams.

Alternate Formats

  • Casebound Edition

    ISBN-10: 0028663535 | ISBN-13: 9780028663531


"In a field of study that continues to develop, Religion: Mental Religion is a solid introduction to the connection between the evolution of brain sciences and religion. This text will be useful to undergraduate students of history, sociology, psychology, anthropology, literary studies, and theology."

— Janis Minshull

Table of Contents

Introduction: Religion, Cognition, and the Brain Sciences.
1. Evolutionary Psychology and Religion: Surveying the Field.
2. Imagining Superhuman Agents.
3. Theory of Mind Mechanisms.
4. Examining the Minds of Gods.
5. Evolutionary Anthropology and Religion: Surveying the Field.
6. Modes of Religiosity.
7. Signaling Theory and Religion.
8. Prosociality and Religion.
9. Cognitive Linguistics and Religion: Surveying the Field.
10. Semantic Networks and Religious Cognition.
11. Conceptual Blending and Religion.
12. Conceptual Projection and Religion.
13. Cognition, Culture, and Religion: Surveying the Field.
14. Religions as Complex Adaptive Systems.
15. Extended Mind and Religious Cognition.
16. Embodied Cognition and Religion.
17. Neuroscience and Religion: Surveying the Field.
18. Neuroscience, Religion, and the Study of Mindfulness.
19. Translational Neuroscience and Religion.
20. Entheogen-Based Religions and Spirituality.
21. Shamanism and the Brain.
22. Dream States and the Mind.

Meet the Author

Author Bio

Niki Kasumi Clements

Niki Kasumi Clements is the Watt J. and Lilly G. Jackson Assistant Professor of Religion at Rice University. Her research in theories and methods in the study of religion brings together philosophy of religion, the history of Christian practice, religious ethics, and the brain sciences.