The God Gene

coverThe God Gene : How Faith is Hardwired into our Genes, by Dean Hamer, from Doubleday, ISBN 0385500580. Spiritual belief gave our ancestors the evolutionary advantages of a sense of purpose, courage under adversity, and resistance to stress and disease. According to Hamer, chief of gene structure at the National Cancer Institute, new discoveries in behavioral genetics and neurobiology indicate that as a result, humans are "hardwired" to embrace a higher power. By analyzing the genetic makeup of over a thousand people of different ages and backgrounds, Hamer has identified a specific gene shared by the most spiritual among us.