merry zombie jesus day...,
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an introduction to introducing evolutionary psychology to political science:
From Cosma I learn of Dr. Satoshi Kanazawa's "Why You Can't Get a Date on a Saturday Night and Why Most Suicide Bombers are Muslim [pdf]", published in the Journal of Social, Evolutionary, and Cultural Psychology, which alleges as follows:
[T]he brain of Muslim men thinks that they could copulate with the 72 virgins in heaven, if they die as martyrs.
[Emph. in the orig. And... "the brain of [plural noun]"?]
Let me add - and there's so much one could add - to Cosma's complaints. We should all be very tired of this nonsense about "72 virgins": the unenumerated huri - be they wide-eyed virgins, modest companions of the opposite sex, one's loved ones, a symbolic representation of the indescribable physical joys of the afterlife, or merely white grapes - are promised to every follower of Islam, not just martyrs. Whatever it is that is indicated in the verses as the reward, the rewards are nevertheless promised indiscriminately to every God-fearing Muslim. No suicidal immolation at the center of a barrage of shrapnel or death in valiant battle against the crusaders is necessary.
And this is little different from the sister-faith I was raised in, in which in addition to beatific vision of god's essence - shared in the dual paradises of Islam - the rather more earthly joys are guaranteed after the final judgement and my disembodied soul shall be recombined in purified glory with my earthly vessel and I - as my mother used to promise - shall be rejoined with my deceased grandfather, dead dog, and one half dozen pet hamsters. Later in life, with sexual and spiritual maturity, this marketing impression is modified appropriately to become "your spouse will be hot again". And it remains, after all, a tempting offer.
Which is to say, Dr. Satoshi Kanazawa's distillation of the conventional wisdom into a series of categorical and bigoted smears is really one of the finest displays of nastiness I've seen in some time. That such a masterpiece can make it through peer-review in 2007 rather speaks for itself. It almost makes it impossible to criticize presidential candidates when they carelessly hawk insane wars with the same exoticized mythologies about ordinary mythologies.
Now, one can consider that perhaps such promises of an eternal Christian paradise lessened Loula Abboud's qualms about death as much as any other, but I have to say that after reading and listening to stupid shit like this for the past seven years the promise of a sexless but nevertheless quiet non-existence certainly makes up a lot of lost ground in its relative appeal.
Maybe all those godless suicide bombers were willing to volunteer their very lives for a cause for the same reason as any religious fanatic: escapism.