Reverse Engineering of Religion

"...religions are an important natural phenomenon. We should study them with the same intensity that we study all the other important natural phenomena...Today's religions are brilliantly designed. They're immensely powerful social institutions and many of their features can be traced back to earlier features that we can really make sense of by reverse engineering. And, as with the cow, there's a mixture of evolutionary design, designed by natural selection itself, and intelligent design -- more or less intelligent design -- redesigned by human beings who are trying to redesign their religions."

~ Dan Dennett, from TED Talks (February 2006)

Mr. Dennet't’s book Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon was reviewed by Leon Wieseltier in “The God Genome,” New York Times (February 19, 2006).