Better Looking Atheists

When I went to read this article on msnbc.com (hat tip hotair.com):

"What if humans could be made twice as intelligent?"

I figured something like this was inevitable:

According to Hunt, there’s evidence to suggest that many humans, if significantly smarter, would lose their belief in God

"There is a small tendency for people with high scores to be more liberal in their social attitudes and less likely to accept strong religious beliefs. This makes sense; we can know things by reasoning or we can accept something on faith. If we all became very good reasoners, there would probably be a small shift to preferring reasoned over faith-based explanations of the phenomenon of life," he wrote.

Not near as bad as I thought it might be…and the writer, Natalie Wochover, tempered it even more, following those words immediately with:

Some people would undoubtedly continue to accept faith-based cosmologies, however, as there have been many examples in history of highly intelligent and religious people, Hunt noted.

But, still two general memes…

  • Religion is for dumber people
  • Faith and reason are at odds

And not only would a smarter population be less religious, they'd be prettier:

Confounding the stereotype of the nerdy brainiac with suspenders and thick glasses, Hunt mentioned one other change that would be expected to occur if we all became smarter. "People would be better looking!" he wrote. A study from Harvard University found a significant correlation between peoples’ test scores and how physically attractive other people rate them to be, he explained, and extrapolating the finding up to people with IQs of 200 implies that, in our world of super geniuses, an "average-looking person" would move up to the top 15th percentile on our current scale of looks.

Wolchover tempers even this a bit, but does posit that "humanity might at least be better at things like exercising and grooming."

Because, you know, smart people are known for the impeccable personal care. 🙂

What do you think, if IQs suddenly doubled, would the world quickly become a population of hot atheists?

Or does this come under, for scientists and the like, "Keep telling yourselves that"? 🙂


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