Belief in Evolution Boils Down to a Gut Feeling

Belief in Evolution Boils Down to a Gut Feeling

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Gut feelings may trump good old-fashioned facts, and even religious beliefs, when it comes to accepting the theory of evolution, new research suggests.

It was assumed that if people understood evolution, they would see the logic and accept it, study co-author David Haury said, while noting that research on the matter has been inconsistent. While one study would find a strong relationship between knowledge level and acceptance, another would not. Likewise, studies have contradicted each other on the relationship between religious identity and acceptance of evolution. So Haury and his colleagues figured that another unexplored factor must be at work. Since previous research has shown that the human brain doesn’t judge the merits of an idea solely on logic, but also on how intrinsically true the idea feels, they explored whether the process of intuitive reasoning might help explain why some people are more accepting of evolution than others.

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