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The Philosophy of Symbolic Forms

Introduction The emergence and expansion of cognitive sciences actually constitute a revolution affecting many fields in the human and social disciplines; its impact influences the way we both think about religion and construct a theological discourse. Indeed, recently published books in this field explain, for example, ‘how religion works’, ‘why Gods persists’, or ‘what religion may be all about’ in cognitive terms. Even though many studies have developed in recent years a real ‘cognitive science of religion’, its consequence for theology and the theological understanding of religion have not yet been sufficiently assessed, except for a * e-mail: loviedo@ofm.org Oviedo/European Journal of Science and Theology 2 (2006), 1, 47-54 48 few essays published in recent years. There is an open field of research and interdisciplinary work to be explored, comparable to the relatively new fields of sociobiology and evolutionary psychology, and many suggestions for the revision and development of several theological topics. What are the main threads of interest and research? There are at least three broad areas of theological research concerned with the outcomes of the cognitive sciences: first, the revision of Christian anthropology, followed by the new understanding of religious ideas or experiences, and finally the theological assimilation of new methods