The Human Brain, Meaning Of Religion And Belief



Abstract. 1

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Introduction. 1

Results. 3

Interpretation and Discussion. 7




This paper is going to be a report of a psychology research that was carried out to answer a number of questions in regards to the human brain, religion and beliefs in a world that is just. The methods applied in this research were used to come up with some results that will be used later in the discussion and conclusion parts of the paper. The conclusions made in this paper, therefore, will be based on the findings of the paper.


Several studies have been conducted on the human brain to come up with the conclusion that it is divided into two different cerebral hemispheres which are all connected by a Corpus callosum. This is what imposes on the two sides of the brain their functions. The two sides are the left and right sides. It has been discovered that though the two parts look alike, their functions are not similar. Researchers interested in finding out how people test with the functionalities of the left or the right brain only, no studies have been conducted yet to indicate that some individuals are either right or left- brained. Numerous wide generalizations have been made in psychological studies about some specific functions on one side of the brain or the other(Azevedo et al., 2009). In fact, scientists interested in the field continue to carry out studies to determine how certain cognitive functions tend to e overridden by one side of the brain or the other; meaning to find out how these two sides and their functions are lateralized. It has been found that the left side of the brain controls the body’s right side. The vice versa of this statement is also true. Also scientists have carried out studies that indicate that the two different sides of the brain have different functions in controlling different body functions(Kandel, Schwartz& Jessel, 2000).

Various techniques and methods have been innovated to further the ways scientists can carry out research on these different functions. Mind mapping is one such technique that is mainly used for patients suffering from specific brain tumors or seizures when the condition has been identified in brain areas that influence the vision, body movement and language of the patient(Vanderwolf, Kolb&Cooley, 1978). Brain mapping, therefore, is an advance procedure in neuroscience that scientists use to determine and point out brain control areas that influence a number of functions. Numerous researchers have contacted studies in this area with the sole purpose of determining some of these roles of the human brain. The most prominent researchers in this field are Gevers and Santiago who greatly furthered the knowledge current scientists has on the matter. All of the studies they carried out came to the same conclusion that both the right and the left side of the brain have different functions, all of which affect different functions in the body(Henri, Deveron&Cattin, 2005).

The current study was abit different than the ones carried out by these researchers. In the bid to discover the different functionalities of the left and right sides of the brain, the current study used a procedure for coming up with a schema, after which the same procedure was used to violate the schema. Each trial in the study started with a black screen followed a second later by the presentation of a pair of nouns(Byrne,2008). After a delay, the researchers then revealed a white dot to the participants, which would either be located below or above the nouns. With these numerous studies, several gaps still exist that have not been addressed. For example, it has not been found whether an individual can be right- brained or left- brained. This possibility has not been explored yet and the area still remains a mystery in psychology today. Though the current study did not cover or address this gap, the findings or outcomes derived from the study will serve a significant role in strengthening the findings of the other studies. This is especially because most of the findings of the study validated the facts and results derived from the other previous studies in the area. The experimental hypothesis of the study was that past words will be received and judged faster in the left brain than in the right brain(Joel, 2008).


As it has been already mentioned, the current study was based on three major parts; the visual attention task, the beliefs in a just world, and religiosity and its meanings. For the first study, it was found that 508 subjects noticed a chance on the last trial. 69. 5 percent of these were women while 92. 9 percent were men, their mean surprise was at 5.44, and it was also found that there were no effects on SOA measures. The study also found that the target dot position was remembered accurately by around 86. 8 percent subjects, with 24. 6 percent recalling at least one word accurately.

Mean RT sd
Critical trial (33rd) 656.3ms 283.1
Control trial 494.6ms 144.6



P <.001——àP- value for mean increase in RT

P=.200——àp- value for mean increase with SOA variation

R= 0.579 (p< 0.001)

R=0.000 (p= 0.996)

In the second part of the study, participants were divided into three groups, nonbelievers, intermediate and believers. The nonbelievers formed the bottom 33.3 percent of the group, intermediate formed the middle 33. 3 percent of the group with the believers forming the 33. 3 percent.

Mean RT n
Nonbelievers 162ms 172
intermediate 137ms 168
Believers 172ms 168


P value was 0. 402

Religiosity n
Nonbelievers 0.41 172
intermediate 0.94 168
Believers 1.05 168

P-value was <0.001


Probability of noticing unexpected events n
Nonbelievers 0.95 172
intermediate 0.92 168
Believers 0.95 168

p- Value = 0.379

Rt difference/ increase correlation with R p
Meaningfulness 0.000 0.996
Religiosity based on experience 0.064 0.149
Self- rated religiousness 0.019 0.669
Religious intrinsic 0.062 0.167
Religious personal 0.002 0.957
Religious social 0.059 0.186
Just world belief 0.013 0.774


Meaningfulness correlation with R p
Religiosity based on experience 0.293 <0.001
Self- rated religiousness 0.400 <0.001
Religious intrinsic 0.258 <0.001
Religious personal 0.370 <0.001
Religious social 0.159 <0.001
Just world belief 0.073 <0.001



Self rated religiousness correlated with R p
Religious intrinsic 0.715 <0.001
Religious personal 0.633 <0.001
Religious social 0.330 0.099
Just world belief 0.064 0.148


Religious intrinsic Rt p
Religious personal 0.432 <0.001
Religious social 0.314 0.099
Just world belief 0.003 0.148


Religious personal Rt p
Religious social 0.440 <0.001
Just world belief 0.208 <0.001


Religious social Rt p
Just world belief 0.135 0.002


Interpretation and Discussion

The results of this study indicate that the performance of the word was better on the left side of the brain than on the left side of the brain. This was concluded because of the fact that much of the scores were positive. Only a few of them were negative. This indicated that the performance of the right brain of the word was poor. The size of the bi- scores was not also large. Therefore, the gap between errors was small. This shows that the incidence of bias and error was also significantly reduced. The hypothesis of the study was that the left side of the brain holds more function in recalling words that the right side of the brain. This hypothesis was proved by the findings of the results.


  1. Azevedo, F. et al. (2009). Equal numbers of neuronal and nonneuronal cells make the human brain an isometrically scaled-up primate brain. The Journal of Comparative   Neurology 513 (5): 532–541
  2. Byrne, J. (2008).Learning and Memory: A comprehensive reference. New York:
  3. Henri, M., Deveron, F. & Cattin, M. (2005).The Human Hippocampus: Functional Anatomy,             Vascularization, and Serial Sections with MRI. New York: Springer.
  4. Joel, M. (2008). Functional actions of corticosteroids in the hippocampus.Eur J Pharmacol 583: 312–321.
  5. Kandel, E., Schwartz, J. & Jessel, T. (2000).Principles of Neural Science. New York: McGraw-   Hill Professional.
  6. Vanderwolf, C., Kolb, B. &Cooley, R. (1978). Behavior of the rat after removal of the neocortex and hippocampal formation”. Journal of comparative and physiological psychology 92 (1): 156–75

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