Friday, November 13, 2009

There Are No Atheists in Foxholes, Or Singles Bars

It is said that there are no atheists in foxholes.

There are apparently no atheists in singles bars, either.

Mating Competitors Increase Religious Beliefs

Yexin Jessica Li, Adam Cohen, Jason Weeden & Douglas Kenrick. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, forthcoming

Abstract: It has been presumed that religiosity has an influence on mating behavior, but here we experimentally investigate the possibility that mating behavior might also influence religiosity. In Experiment 1, people reported higher religiosity after looking at mating pools consisting of attractive people of their own sex compared to attractive opposite sex targets. Experiment 2 replicated the effect with an added control group, and suggested that both men and women become more religious when seeing same sex competitors. We discuss several possible explanations for these effects. Most broadly, the findings contribute to an emerging literature on how cultural phenomena such as religiosity respond to ecological cues in potentially functional ways.


(Nod to Kevin L, who could be an atheist anywhere, he's that brave)

6 comments:

eric_mcfadden41@hotmail.com said...

When trying to seduce a female, never admit to being an atheist or an economist. Just be ready with your lie ahead of time, as always.

Anonymous said...

I am an atheist and looking to become an economist. Its good I'm already married. I actually think atheism and economics are a good fit as both require a strong does of suspicion, and reliance on rational thinking.
Jayson

Tom said...

It would be interesting to see how the study pretends to control for the subject's belief that most potential mates would be abhorred by the simple mention of the word, "atheism". (or not -- you'll notice I didn't quote from the paper -- lazy!)

Tom said...

Richard Feynman, late in life: "I don't feel frightened by not knowing things, by being lost in the mysterious universe without having any purpose — which is the way it really is, as far as I can tell, possibly. It doesn't frighten me."

Are people "in foxholes" notable for rationality? Are they held up as role models? Do you want to live as if in a foxhole? The quote about atheists in foxholes is among the most absurd things that religionists say.

eric_mcfadden41@hotmail.com said...

Gentlemen,
I suggest we conduct an experiment. Each of us seduce 1000 females, one of us as atheist, on monotheist, and one polytheist. The person that takes the longest to get to a magic number 1000 proves the point.
Btw I am a(former) soldier who has been in danger, I never prayed or thought for a second a god would help me out. Black swan bitches.

Michael said...

I think Eric may have won the battle....