Myth is great for talking about where everything came from. Or what happens after you die. Or whether there was something before nothing. What is free will? We don't have great scientific accounts for these things. I think there are religious narratives that help people deal with really important but as-yet unanswerable questions. But myth is terrible for dietary rules.
Ideas about religion can be so powerful that people can't endorse them without giving up a part of their identity. It's the same thing with diets. If you've adopted a diet and it's become part of your identity, asking someone to reconsider something as simple as eating sugar or gluten is kind of like asking someone to give up their faith. To admit that the core of their identity is fundamentally mistaken. The pointy-head scientists and the people affiliated with Big Agriculture couldn't possibly be right because they are demons. -- Alan Levinovitz
Friday, 6 May 2016
myth is terrible for dietary rules
Head over to The Atlantic archive to read James Hamblin's talk with Alan Levinovitz about the intersection of religious thought and nutrition, storytelling and motivational psychology, and how it all informs faith in science.