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Back to Soul Beliefs: Causes and Consequences - Unit 2: Belief Systems

Learner Reviews & Feedback for Soul Beliefs: Causes and Consequences - Unit 2: Belief Systems by Rutgers the State University of New Jersey

171 ratings

About the Course

Throughout history, the vast majority of people around the globe have believed they have, however defined, a “soul.” While the question of whether the soul exists cannot be answered by science, what we can study are the causes and consequences of various beliefs about the soul and its prospects of surviving the death of the body. Why are soul and afterlife beliefs so common in human history? Are there adaptive advantages to assuming souls exist? Are there brain structures that have been shaped by environmental pressures that provide the foundation of body/mind dualism that is such a prominent feature of many religions? How do these beliefs shape the worldviews of different cultures and our collective lives? What is the role of competing afterlife beliefs in religion, science, politics, and war? This course explores several facets of this relatively unexplored but profoundly important aspect of human thought and behavior. The course consists mainly of 70 to 80 minute lectures, typically broken up into 3 segments, recorded from a course offered by Rutgers University School of Arts and Sciences. These videos include slides and some embedded video clips. Most lectures are accompanied by slides used during the lecture, also including recommended reading assignment which may provide additional opportunities to reflect on your studies. Due to the lengthiness of this class and natural progression, the online course has been separated into 3 units, this is Unit 2....

Top reviews


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The professorsoffer science and facts; the superstitious offer dogma.


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An excellent presentation. Guest lecturers outstanding. Forces a person to really question beliefs rather than accepting at face value. Excellent points raised by learned professionals.

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26 - 44 of 44 Reviews for Soul Beliefs: Causes and Consequences - Unit 2: Belief Systems

By Winston A W

Feb 2, 2021

Excellent, thank you.

By Mohamed S E

Feb 13, 2018

Amazing, must have

By Emil

Nov 11, 2018

Very nice course.

By Puneet K

Oct 3, 2015

Great experience

By Carol

Mar 19, 2017



Dec 31, 2016



Feb 13, 2016


By Deneb C

Mar 23, 2016


By Pamela S

Oct 21, 2015


By Stanny G

Mar 15, 2016

Very interesting! I would recommend this course to everyone ! Especially the assignments made me look at myself and the world in a different way.

By Mick H

Sep 4, 2015

A wonderful insight into why we believe, and what effect deeply held beliefs have on out behaviour.

By Joy S

Mar 14, 2017

just as good as part 1. Neat old professor. A bit more abstract than 1.


Sep 4, 2015

The course did not continue as it was in its Part-1.

By Ronald N

Aug 27, 2015

A very good course that makes you think.

By Stephen R

Oct 4, 2015

An interesting course even if you don't complete the assignments because you can expect to get around an 80% even if you fully grasp the subject matter due to the peer review requirement. The course would be much better without that requirement.

By Vanessa A

Oct 19, 2015

I did not enjoy this class. It was hard to take notes, the conversation from the instructors was to casual.

By Albin E M J

Oct 4, 2019

I finished this class (as well as unit 1) about 3 weeks ago and still haven't gotten a final grade which I really need for school.

By Michael R R

Dec 23, 2019

I completed the assignments on time but they were never graded and I received an incomplete in the course. The course material was good but without any feedback on the assignments, it was rather disappointing - especially after completing the assignments (without feedback) getting an incomplete.

By Deleted A

Sep 21, 2015

Too much talking in a lot of these course offerings. I have ADD and I cannot take excessive talking.