Researchers at Duke University in North Carolina say that sex could inspire a belief – or an increased belief – in God and religion.
According to the research, sex releases the ‘love hormone’ oxytocin, which not only promotes social bonding and altruism but also divinity – especially in men.
Although women produce more oxytocin, men with a certain gene, called CD38 which regulates its release in the brain, had a much more amplified response, according to the study.
According to a news website for the University, Duke Today, lead author Patty Van Cappellen, a social psychologist at the American University, said: 'Spirituality and meditation have each been linked to health and well-being in previous research. We were interested in understanding biological factors that may enhance those spiritual experiences. Oxytocin appears to be part of the way our bodies support spiritual beliefs.'
The men who got a dose of the ‘love hormone’ were more likely to say that spirituality was an important part of their lives.
And not all of them had previously said that faith was a part of their lives. They also expressed a feeling of unity with other people and living things.