A Scientist’s New Theory: Religion Was Key to Humans’ Social Evolution

Robin Dunbar and his colleagues already published research demonstrating that two other particularly human behaviors increased people’s capacity for social bonding. In the lab, they showed that first, laughter, and second, singing, left research subjects more capable of forming connections with other people than they were before. Religion is the remaining key to explaining humans’ remarkable social networks, Dunbar thinks. “These three things are very good at triggering endorphins, making us feel bonded,” he said.

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