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Since I've committed to this thread, I might raise another (tangential?) issue. Are you (Elezier) entirely certain of your understanding of evolutionary biology? I'm by no means an expert, but look at what you wrote here: "Anger exists in Homo sapiens because angry ancestors had more kids. There's no other way it could have gotten there."

The first sentence is true only in the most trivial sense. Noam Chomsky explained this well: "While it is true in a very vague sense (it's correct to say that systems we now have developed through evolution, through natural selection), it's important to recognize how little we're saying when we say that. For example, it is certainly not necessarily the case that every particular trait that we have is the result of specific selection, that is, that we were selected for having that trait."

Thus, taken together, your second statement strongly implies two things

  1. That anger was selected because it had a direct effect on differential fitness and
  2. that no other hypothesis could account for this development.

As Chomsky points out, implication #2 is simply untenable and untrue. Implication #1 is an empirical matter that must be proved, if, indeed, it even can be proved.

There's another statement of yours that I recently read which strikes me as patently, fundamentally wrong: "But if faith is a true religious adaptation, I don't see why it's even puzzling what the selection pressure could have been.

Heretics were routinely burned alive just a few centuries ago. Or stoned to death, or executed by whatever method local fashion demands. Questioning the local gods is the notional crime for which Socrates was made to drink hemlock."

Setting aside the flawed assumptions of your argument (namely, that religion is a human universal), here you seem to disregard the crucial warning issued by G.C. William against misuse of the concept of "adaptation" (even as you rightly call attention to his criticisms of "group selection"): "Evolutionary adaptation is a special and onerous concept that should not be used unnecessarily, and an effect should not be called a function unless it is clearly produced by design and not by chance. When recognized, adaptation should be attributed to no higher a level of organization than is demanded by the evidence." (Williams 1966)

It is simply wrong to base an argument of human function on evidence for which natural selection cannot act. First, even strong selective pressure acting over mere centuries is generally not sufficient to produce adaptation (natural selection can act fast, but not that fast). This is especially true when that selective pressure arises in an environmental context fundamentally altered from the ancestral environment.

Second, arguments about human adaptations must always be couched in terms of the ancestral environment in which the ancestral traits were "groomed". Our ability to prove an instance of adaptation is directly proportional to our ability to prove certain aspects about the ancestral environment and our ability to prove certain aspects about the ancestral genome. The recent goings on during the Middle Ages have had no statistically significant effect that one may characterize as 'an adaptation'.

In my view, it is far more likely that religion and faith are maladaptive or nonadaptive evolutionary artifacts correlated (genetically or environmentally) to certain other adaptive emotional organs and that the peculiar stimuli of our modern environment elicits these religious emotions quite incidentally, quite accidentally. This is my own intuitive speculation, though. In theory, these matters can be settled empirically, depending upon our capacity to illuminate the vagaries of the ancestral environment.

Let me end with a quote from Donald Symons "The Evolution of Human Sexuality", which has inspired my thinking on these matters and to which I point at as an example of excellent literature:

"The complexity of human interaction and the subtleties of judgment and calculation required to achieve reproductive success in any given society may be sufficient to account for the evolution of learning potentials that make possible--as an incidental effect--human social variability.

I believe that this possibility should receive serious consideration especially since it is in many ways uncongenial. It is uncongenial, for example, because we value creativity and do not value Machiavellian intrigue, and to propose that intrigue is a function of the human brain and creativity is an incidental effect may seem to elevate and justify the former and to denigrate and trivialize the latter; but this is true only to the extent that natural is equated with good. This point of view is also uncongenial because it implies that a great deal of human variability observed today probably is not explicable by any general scheme but is largely a product of historical circumstances. If this is true, it seriously compromises the possibility of finding general explanations for human behavior. But however uncongenial this may be to our satisfaction in intellectual generalization, it may be true nonetheless." (Symons 1979)

I suggest you follow the same advice you offered to (amateur and ancient) philosophers: do not be too eager to offer a generalized answer to all questions of human function. It is possible that some knowledge is simply beyond our scope of knowing. We should therefore confront and internalize the limitations knowledge capacity, so that we might better formulate questions that lie within reachable bounds.