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Nature:来自神的惩罚的威慑让人们变得更慷慨

标签: 惩罚 犯罪
摘要 : 如果你遇上一些意外之财,你会私藏起这些钱还是送给一个遥远的陌生人?一项新的研究称,答案可能取决于你信什么神。从基督教和伊斯兰教这样的宗教到古埃及的多神教(如图)里都存在教化大众的神灵,它们关心人类的行为,惩罚犯罪.

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合作在越来越大和越来越复杂、简单亲缘关系未必足够的人类社会中何以能够持久存在?本文作者分析了宗教以及那些教化性的、惩罚性的和对人类的事情特别感兴趣的神所起作用。通过经济游戏和民族志访谈(ethnographic interviews),作者对信奉基督教、印度教、佛教以及包括 “泛灵论” (animism)和 “祖先崇拜”(ancestor worship)在内的地方传统信仰的超过500人进行了测试。他们发现,那些信仰自己认为道德高尚、惩善除恶和博学多才的神的人,对于那些相距遥远、具有同样宗教信仰的人最有可能很慷慨。

如果你遇上一些意外之财,你会私藏起这些钱还是送给一个遥远的陌生人?一项新的研究称,答案可能取决于你信什么神。从基督教和伊斯兰教这样的宗教到古埃及的多神教(如图)里都存在教化大众的神灵,它们关心人类的行为,惩罚犯罪(如图)。一个俗称“大神假说”的概念认为,这样的神会让人们更愿意合作,或许还推动了社会从狩猎采集的集群成长为政治复杂的国家。为了检验这个想法,即教化神灵促进群体的慷慨行为,甚至跨越了长距离的障碍,研究人员请591个人来参与一个经济游戏,这些人从坦桑尼亚的狩猎采集者到巴西的工人,形形色色。研究人员给了参与者一些钱,然后要求他们掷骰子。如果某种颜色出现,那么他们就要扔一些硬币到自己的罐子里;如果出现了另一种颜色,那么他们就要把钱放在另一个罐子里,这个罐子注定要移交给另一个社区的膜拜同一宗教的一个陌生人。在另外一轮游戏中,钱的受益者或者是游戏参与者自己的社区的成员,或者是遥远社区的陌生人,所有这些人都和玩家归属同一个宗教。没有人监督这个游戏,研究者预期会有一定的作弊行为。研究人员今天在《自然》杂志上报告说,当科学家们总结每个罐子里的硬币的时候,他们发现,在两轮游戏中,越相信神的惩罚的人们给远方的陌生人的钱越多。有趣的是,对神更愿意奖励善行的信念并没有同样地带来更多的慷慨行为,这表明超自然的报复可能曾是鼓励合作行为、推进社会扩展的一个关键因素。

原文链接:

Moralistic gods, supernatural punishment and the expansion of human sociality

原文摘要:

Since the origins of agriculture, the scale of human cooperation and societal complexity has dramatically expanded1, 2. This fact challenges standard evolutionary explanations of prosociality because well-studied mechanisms of cooperation based on genetic relatedness, reciprocity and partner choice falter as people increasingly engage in fleeting transactions with genetically unrelated strangers in large anonymous groups. To explain this rapid expansion of prosociality, researchers have proposed several mechanisms3, 4. Here we focus on one key hypothesis: cognitive representations of gods as increasingly knowledgeable and punitive, and who sanction violators of interpersonal social norms, foster and sustain the expansion of cooperation, trust and fairness towards co-religionist strangers5, 6, 7, 8. We tested this hypothesis using extensive ethnographic interviews and two behavioural games designed to measure impartial rule-following among people (n = 591, observations = 35,400) from eight diverse communities from around the world: (1) inland Tanna, Vanuatu; (2) coastal Tanna, Vanuatu; (3) Yasawa, Fiji; (4) Lovu, Fiji; (5) Pesqueiro, Brazil; (6) Pointe aux Piments, Mauritius; (7) the Tyva Republic (Siberia), Russia; and (8) Hadzaland, Tanzania. Participants reported adherence to a wide array of world religious traditions including Christianity, Hinduism and Buddhism, as well as notably diverse local traditions, including animism and ancestor worship. Holding a range of relevant variables constant, the higher participants rated their moralistic gods as punitive and knowledgeable about human thoughts and actions, the more coins they allocated to geographically distant co-religionist strangers relative to both themselves and local co-religionists. Our results support the hypothesis that beliefs in moralistic, punitive and knowing gods increase impartial behaviour towards distant co-religionists, and therefore can contribute to the expansion of prosociality.

来源: Nature 浏览次数:12

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