How Our Brains Know God
By Peter Lundell -
If you ever want a scientific basis for connecting with God, here’s one:
Andrew Newberg, a neuropsychological researcher at the University of Pennsylvania, studies two kinds of reality: One is physical or “baseline” reality—the brain’s perception of material objects (a chair, a table) and sensations (warm, cold). In contrast, he attempts to scientifically verify the brain’s perception of spiritual reality, which he calls “Absolute Unitary Being.”
Some argue that what we think is spiritual reality—for example, God—is nothing more than neurological blips or chemistry changes. In fact that’s what happens in our brains when we experience spiritual phenomena.
The problem with this argument is that the brain experiences physical reality in exactly the same way—through neurological blips and chemistry changes. So even the most hardened atheist or scientist must either take the possibility of spiritual reality seriously or discount all perceptions of reality and conclude that we all live in a dream state.
Isn’t this fun?
Persons who engaged in Newberg’s research consistently testified that the experience of spiritual reality was more “fundamentally real” than that of physical reality. Wow.
Newberg theorizes that spiritual and physical reality are two versions of reality that may be complimentary. That makes biblical sense.
I’m not concerned that Newberg doesn’t take a Christian point of view. A person can perceive God’s existence, just as we perceive his physical creation, without knowing or submitting to Him.
The significant point is that Newberg is doing breakthrough scientific research on the ways in which God created the human mind to perceive Him, as well as His creation. He is giving us a solid scientific basis to say that faith and perceptions of God are as real as the physical world around us. That’s worth getting excited about!
PRAYER: Lord, you have made me with an amazing brain. As others learn how it works, I dedicate mine to you that I would truly have ‘the mind of Christ’ (1 Corinthians 2:16 NIV).
“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well” (Psalm 139:14 NIV).