According to a CNN article from a couple of years ago, (“Are humans hard-wired for faith?”), this just may be the case.
Neuroscientist Dr. Andrew Newberg discovered from studying brain scans that the parietal lobe, which processes our sensory information, is also responsible for “that feeling of becoming part of something greater than oneself.” Newberg believes that his findings may be evidence that faith is a natural function of the brain inherent in all human beings.
If human beings are indeed “hard-wired for faith,” then what can we conclude from this finding? Does that mean that those who believe are more “fit” in the struggle for life than others, and as a result, were the ones that survived and evolved? Of course not. A more logical explanation would be that people’s brains were designed this way to serve a real, tangible function. If belief in God is “delusional/harmful/mind-numbing” as many atheist assert, then why do human beings universally share this neurological trait? How would human beings with this trait be able to flourish with a trait that that is “detrimental?” The obvious answer is that this belief and faith is not detrimental and is likely to be innate. And if our brains were designed for such a purpose… well, you can draw the obvious and logical conclusion.
What about those who lack faith and any spiritual connection when participating in prayer? Could this possibly be indicative a neurological disorder or deficiency? Some Christians insist that atheists actually know that there is a God–they just don’t want to have to play by the rules set by Him. I disagree. I think that most atheists genuinely cannot fathom God’s existence and that Dr. Newberg’s findings might explain why.