Neurobiology of the Gods How Brain Physiology Shapes the Recurrent Imagery of Myth and Dreams

ISBN-10: 0415673003
ISBN-13: 9780415673006
Edition: 2012
Authors: Erik D. Goodwyn
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Description: Where does science end and religion begin? Can "spiritual" images and feelings be understood on a neurobiological level without dismissing their power and mystery?In this book, psychiatrist Erik Goodwyn addresses these questions by reviewing decades  More...

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Book details

Copyright year: 2012
Publisher: Taylor & Francis Group
Publication date: 2/7/2012
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 272
Size: 6.50" wide x 9.50" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.946
Language: English

Where does science end and religion begin? Can "spiritual" images and feelings be understood on a neurobiological level without dismissing their power and mystery?In this book, psychiatrist Erik Goodwyn addresses these questions by reviewing decades of research, putting together a compelling argument that the emotional imagery of myth and dreams can be traced to our deep brain physiology, and importantly, how a sensitive look at this data reveals why mythic or religious symbols are indeed more "godlike" than we might have imagined.  The Neurobiology of the Godsweaves together Jungian depth psychology with research in evolutionary psychology, neuroanatomy, cognitive science, neuroscience, anthropology, mental imagery, dream research, and metaphor theory into a comprehensive model of how our brains contribute to the recurrent images of dreams, myth, religion and even hallucinations. Divided into three sections, this book provides: definitions and foundationsan examination of individual symbolsconclusive thoughts on how brain physiology shapes the recurring images that we experience.Goodwyn shows how common dream, myth and religious experiences can be meaningful and purposeful without discarding scientific rigor. The Neurobiology of the Godswill therefore be essential reading for Jungian analysts and psychologists as well as those with an interest in philosophy, anthropology and the interface between science and religion.

Erik D. Goodwyn is a practicing military psychiatrist for the Air Force in North Dakota, involved in teaching, research and patient care, including deployed soldiers. His essays on archetypes, Jungian theory and neuroscience as well as dreams reported by soldiers in combat have appeared in The Journal of Analytical Psychology .

Acknowledgment
Foreword
Definitions and foundations
Symbols, biology and depth psychology
Foundations
Mental images, symbolic images and "archetypal" images
Individual symbols
Human and animal spirits
The anima/feminine symbols
The animus/masculine symbols
The mother
The father
The child
The shadow
The dreamscape
Deep archetypes-time, number, causation
Complex recurrent symbols and self symbols
Conclusions
Meaning
Molecules to mandalas
Appendix: Affective neuroscience and imagery
Notes
Bibliography
Index

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