This is kind of new stuff. I wrote that, that, that assignment that partial history of afterlife beliefs. But I was pretty much on my own. There's, there's, there's, there's, there's nothing like what I wanted that existed in, in, in the literature. So, that, that paper, that partial history of, of afterlife beliefs, is, is a, is a working paper. It's a working project and at some point down the road I'd like you know, I need to have a fact checker. Did, did I get it right? Particularly when we get to the philosophers. It, it's, it's okay. It, it's it's not great. But it, it's a start. And let's, let's just go for an introduction now. And I will con, look back there once in a while and make sure that where I am on that, that's much better than having a monitor in front of me. Because I was constantly looking at the monitor when we first opened the show here. So what, what is, what is the evidence for that statement. No society has ever existed without a, a religion. How do we know that? Well actually we don't know that. Where do we start? Where to begin? 2.4 millions years ago with Homo habilis which was presumably one of our predecessors. Did they have religion? [SOUND] We don't know. I, I suspect probably not in any kind of forum that we would re, recognize. What about this guy? I won't even attempt to to pronounce the word but these, these fossils date back to 2 millions years ago not 2.5 millions years ago whatever the other one. It has an intriguing combination of ape like and, and human features. But, but there, there are, are, are, are other candidates already discovered or yet to be discovered. All the gaps haven't been filled in or should we start 1.4 these, these, these numbers are mind boggling aren't they? 1.4 million years ago when Homo erectus left the forest for the African Savanna. That was a pretty interesting development. Probably due to massive weather change had them move from, from the jungle. Into the Savannah, into the open space, in search for, in search for food. At this point our ancestors were up right walking erectly. And they, they were apparently very, very good runners had excellent movement, with their, with their hands. Had crude tools, stones ma, mainly. And some of them were chipped, that had a, a little point on them useful for killing and, and useful for opening up and, and carving up the kill. You're going to hear a lot about this in this course. It's all about survival. It's all about survival. And one thing it seems relatively certain. It said, somewhere along the line our ancestor discovered that it's better to be a member of a group then to go it alone, especially when hunting. Now, exactly when that happened, we don't know. This is this is guesswork. This is a theory. What I'm talking about today is a theory or a conjunction of various theories of of early life on this planet with human beings. A good theory is one that generates hypotheses, that can be tested. Now we, we can't really test that hypothesis but, but as, as things go on, we might be able to discover this or that. If that that was so, then this, this must be true. I'll give you example that in a moment if I remember. So groups onset of tribalism. It's important to be a member of a group. That's why I mentioned it today with. That you, you, if we still, some of us, have habits or, or clothing that indicate that we are a member of a group. And when you see some, a member of your group, kind of feel pretty good about it, there's lots of tribes. I was driving to to, to work on, on Saturday. I shouldn't go in on Saturday but I went in on a Saturday and everybody I went by young people, old people, guys on crutches. They all had red shirts on, what is that all about? Well of course they were a member of the Rutgers tribe, you know, they, they were going to the football game. And so they, they, they felt connected. At least for, for a while but, but that, then, then, that aspect of their tribal behavior was over probably shortly after the game was over. And tribalism got a boost with the onset of language and music. Over time, the, the, the larynx and the throat of our ancestors dropped. We had more control over our vocal cords. We were probably much earlier than that, I mean it didn't all of a sudden happen. This happens gradually over, over taught like we're talking million years or hundreds of thousands of years for evolution to take place. And a lot of it took place in our, our vocal cords and it all took place in our brain and our brain structures. >> [COUGH] >> The size of the brain on pre-humans didn't change for about 200,000 years. Same size, probably the same size of I mean, the volume. But what did evolve are various functions within the brain. One thing we know pretty much for sure is that the increase of their density of the frontal lobe and the prefrontal lobe. Very useful in, in, in controlling immediate expression of, of, of, of emotions. Now there, there's this idea with some evidence that a lot of these things began to a, a, a you know, coalesce. Around 30 to 40,00 years ago maybe up to about 50,000 years ago. So, now we're, we're, we're talking about numbers that we're a little bit better a, able to, to, to understand. I want to go back to prible, tribalism for a moment, though and, and and, and, and groupness. And give you an example of why music might have been so important. [MUSIC] >> [LAUGH]. >> I can do it backwards too, I mean. >> [APPLAUSE] The no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no don't applaud. You should have seen me 30,000 years ago. >> [LAUGH] >> I really knew my stuff. >> [LAUGH]. >> Now, the, the, the point of that was not to be silly. You, you've all got may have, most of you have gone to live concerts and with a live concert I'm not talking about an orchestra performance you know, you know they did that to. But where the is, the audience come and dances around. And if you are engaged in that and you are dancing around and, and with, with people some of whom you don't even know. At the end of the concert, the live concert, you're all sweaty. You tend to like the people who were there. Eh, eh, even people you've never met before, all right? Now, that, that, that performance would last maybe two hours, maybe three hours. If you we're lucky, you had and went to a good concert and the performers were willing to hang it out, hang in there for a long time. We're talking about these dances, tribal dances. I did you know, a few steps made up a few steps but I, I was finished in about you know, a minute but these dances lasted all night. They, they lasted for maybe several days with, with breaks here and there. And when you do even the silly steps that I was doing, after a while you're likely to fall into a trance. I, I was, I was close to a trance but I didn't get there. >> [LAUGH]. >> And, and and when I was practicing at home, you wouldn't believe I was doing this, I, I, I did go in a trance and I was speaking in tongues. My wife hates it when I speak in tongues. She says I'm con, she's swearing, so she sassed me in the face while I'm making that up, but any way. >> [LAUGH] >> But when you, you get into this dance everybody sort of doing the same thing at the same beat, at the same rhythm, you go several people go into trances. And they're able to gain access to the spiritual world. Particularly when you're taking hallucinatory drugs at the same time. >> [LAUGH] >> I mean, and that, that's pretty clear that that happened. So, so, whe, whe, when you were involved in these sort of annual or on the spot dancing marathons tribalism was, was enhanced, all right? You get, you get what I mean, I mean, whe, when, when people are, are peeling off and coming back and you're, you're in touch with the spiritual world personally. It's really important, personally. And, and you have a stronger and stronger connection or bond with members of your tribe, members of your group. Well, why is that important? I'll get to in a moment, I think. Life on the Savannah was not easy. There was a lot of competition. From other tribes and the reason to bond with your tribe the reason to feel one with your tribe wha, what was it was useful for people to put their life on the life for the proje, protection of their tribe because their is a lot of inter tribal competition. So it was matter of bonding with your tribe. We could call it loving members of the tribe and doing anything it was necessary for the tribes survival. Theory has it that, that these the tribes were constantly attacking each other because of, of competition over space, competition over food. Now, what, what may of happened might what may have been part of what merged, emerged, around 20 to 30 to 40 particularly 50,000 years ago was the emergence of something called Mirror Neurons. We'll talk about mirror neurons later on in, in the course but mirror neurons, apparently. I mean this is a brand new development in, in the field of, of neuroscience and again you, you will read about it in something written by somebody named Ramachandran. Don't try to write that down. These neurons that, that are not just particular to human beings there's examples in primates. Allow us to imitate the behavior other people. Allow us to imitate other people. We just watch and we can do what we see other people do. Now if I had perfect, perfected my da, dance here a little bit. I've done a little bit of it and it would look pretty good, I, I would invite a couple people up here and say did, just do the dance I just did. And you would do a pretty good job just by observing and replicating what I had said. You, you can see how useful that is in people communicating with each other. Engaged in the same kind of acts and activity. Mirror neurons, it's proposed is also very much involved in empathizing with other people. Like, like, like, putting yourself in another person's situation and feeling what they're feeling or at least guessing what it is that's they're feeling. So that has a great deal that's, that's a big boost the whole idea of, of bonding. So, probably this, this, this convergence of the, the, the the, the forebrain prefrontal lobe and emergence of neuro mirror neurons had a big impact on our behavior and particularly in the area of transmitting culture. That's how we transmit culture.