The Early Development Of Human Consciousness

1448 WordsDec 17, 20166 Pages
The early development of human consciousness seems to have given humans a genetic predisposition to the belief in religion. During this early development many chemicals known as entheogens were used during religious sacraments and ceremonies, especially during times when religion was undergoing critical stages of development. Once early humans could communicate concepts effectively they utilized experiences derived from such substances in the integration of theological belief systems. Describing psychoactive substances without using a word that has a negative connotation attached to it can be difficult. In an effort to combat this problem, a committee under the chairmanship of Carl Ruck described “after trying out a number of words he came up with entheogen, ‘god generated within’, which his committee unanimously adopted” (Wasson 30). Psychoactive substances, or entheogens, have been researched for years by scientists, however, research into their historical significance is severely limited. The origin of religion cannot simply be looked at through the perspective of entheogens, there are many factors associated with it which spread multiple fields. Science, sociology, history, archeology, psychology, chemistry and botany all cross over when researching this subject. James McClenon has argued that the conceptions of religion have their origins in the evolution of psychophysiological structures associated with hypnotizability. If one is susceptible to a hypnotic trance
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