Reduce people's religosity through transcranial magnetic stimulation...

by Thursday 6 Replies latest social current

  • Thursday

    Found this interesting article in the December 2015 issue of the Australasian Science Journal, on whether it might be possible to change a person's beliefs by stimulating their brain via transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS).

    "The study by US and UK researchers recruited 38 undergraduate students, with each reporting they held significant religious beliefs and conservative political views. Participants in the experimental condition received TMS to the pMFC for a period of 40 seconds, a process that reduces neural activity in this region for up to an hour. Control participants underwent a similar process, but with a low level of TMS that has no effect on the functioning of the pMFC.

    The researchers found that those who had received TMS reported significantly less conviction in their beliefs concerning God, angels and Heaven following a reminder of death than those in the non-TMS control group. Those receiving TMS rated the immigrant’s article significantly more positively than the non-TMS controls. Together, these findings of reduced religiosity and lessened disparagement of immigrants supported the hypothesis that disruption of the pMFC temporarily weakens the strength of previously established beliefs or attitudes, limiting their effect on decision-making."


  • Coded Logic
    Coded Logic
    TMS can help us get rid of cognitive bias? Sign me up!
  • dropoffyourkeylee
    Somebody call up Clayton Woodworth!
  • OnTheWayOut
    "following a reminder of death" sounds like leading the subject to the desired result. Plus, if it works, what would be the positive reason to subject a believer to this treatment?
  • Iown Mylife
    Iown Mylife

    Religion is a disease?! Makes sense.


  • JeffT
    I'm seeing "A Clockwork Orange" in my head. IMHO brainwashing of any sort by anybody is just wrong. If you can't convince them you're right by stating a good argument, you need to rethink your own position, not f*** with people's heads until they think like you.
  • Village Idiot
    Village Idiot
    I've heard of TMS being used to enhance religiosity, so it's a two edged sword.

Share this