At risk of being dismissed as a "troll", may I submit this Paper for discussion. I've bought & read Jesse Bering's "The God Instinct", and it was a waste of money & a waste of time.

A Short Paper by Richard W. Symonds. Member of International Society For Philosophers (ISFP) - December 31 2010

('The God Instinct' by Jesse Bering - NB Publishing 2011)

.1 This Paper seeks to show it is not the vast majority of people Jesse Bering believes to be living an "illusion" - but Bering himself.

.2 I mean "illusion" in the sense that, say, the clever people in Galileo's time - who built a vast, monolithic body of knowledge on the (false) assumption the Sun went round the Earth - were living an illusion...and (unintentionally) deluded countless millions of the not-so-clever in that false belief.

.3 Jesse Bering ("Son of Dawkins") and Richard Dawkins ("The God Delusion") - both committed 'Blind Faith' Evolutionists & Moral Relativists - have built a vast, monolithic body of knowledge on the (false) belief that Human Beings are just Animals - not unique Moral Beings - and are deluding countless millions of the not-so-clever in that false belief. 

.4 70 years ago, Philosopher & Moral Realist 'Professor' CEM Joad (1891-1953) pleaded with his colleagues to mend their newly-found philosophical ways (eg Moral Relativism, Logical Positivism & Animal Behaviourism), predicting that failure to do so would render Philosophy (& Psychology) increasingly irrelevant – and increasingly vulnerable to totalitarian thought.

.5 CEMJ’s warning ‘fell on deaf ears’ in his time – and continues to do so….except for a few readers of Cambridge University’s Alumni Magazine (”Essay : In Defence Of Moral Philosophy” by Professor Simon Blackburn – Michaelmas 2009 Edition), and adherents to Mega Theory.

.6 Totalitarianism, which George Orwell – a contemporary of Joad – was warning against in 1949, was already prevalent within the social and economic culture of the time – primarily due to the ‘false teachers’ of philosophical relativism (eg Wittgenstein & The Vienna Circle). Times have not changed. 'False teachers', like Bering & Dawkins, continue to successfully peddle this increasingly-obsolete, biologically-rooted-only, Darwinian Evolutionary Psychology.

.7 Cyril Joad, as a Moral Philosopher, was warning against Moral Relativism 9 years earlier than Orwell :
In 1940, Joad warned his profession of the dangers in rejecting its ‘Classical’ tradition (eg Plato’s ‘Forms’ of Truth, Beauty & Goodness), and pleaded for a return to that tradition (”Appeal To Philosophers”, University of London Aristotelian Society – XL 1940).
Dr. CEM Joad continued to warn – but nobody was listening….except a few debaters at Oxford University:

.8 In June 1950, 5 months after Orwell’s death (and 3 years before his own), Cyril Joad won an Oxford Union Debate : “That This House Regrets The Influence Exercised By The U.S. As The Dominant Power Among The Democratic Nations” – resulting in Randolph Churchill accusing him of being a “Third Class Socrates”.

.9 ‘Professional Outcast’ Joad, also a celebrity wartime BBC Brains Trust panellist, was treated with ridicule, contempt and disdain by most professional philosophers of the time – especially Bertrand Russell – and his warnings were ignored and dismissed within his profession, and beyond – and remain so.

.10 CEMJ was a Moral Realist – in direct opposition to Moral Relativists – and later developed his “Transcendence-Immanence” ideas in his last book: “Recovery of Belief – A Restatement of Christian Philosophy” (Faber & Faber 1952)

.11 Today, we can’t say we were not warned of this ‘totalitarian’ danger – now more prevalent than ever – and we can’t say moral philosophy (& philosophers) have had nothing to say in dealing with the problems which continue to haunt us.

.12 Joad is still ’shouting from the rooftops’ – through his many books – but we need to understand (and deal with) the unpalatable reasons why such clear warnings are still loudly ‘falling on deaf ears’.

.13 One 'deaf ear' is Bering - the other 'loud mouth' is Dawkins. They are the deluded ones. Be warned.

.14 A greater understanding of Moral Realism (especially through the work of Moral Philosopher CEM Joad) – and an unequivocal rejection of Evolutionists & Moral Relativists (especially Bering & Dawkins) - will be two critical pre-conditions for Humanity’s survival in the early 21st century.


Richard W. Symonds MCIPD is a Member of the International Society For Philosophers ( ), 
Founder Member of The Cyril Joad Society (CJS) & Gatwick City of Ideas (GCI) 
Author of “The Mega Instinct : Mega Theory & The Moral Revolution"
He can be contacted by Email : or at GCI :

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So are you going to provide evidence for the assertion that human beings are unique moral beings, particularly taking into account that behavior which is often touted as moral and 'uniquely human' has in fact been observed in non-human species, including but not limited to empathy, altruism, and self-sacrifice?

When Galieo (among others) overturned the prior, mistaken, geocentric position, they did so by providing evidence that demonstrated that the new, heliocentric model better fit the facts than the older, less accurate geocentric model. It was not accomplished by simply declaring it to be so and making ad hominem attacks upon their opponents.

Furthermore, are you aware of the Galieo fallacy, or the Galieo Gambit? In essence, this is when someone with a position with little to no support in the scientific community attempts to borrow respectability by comparing their position with that of Galieo or other scientists who were persecuted for their positions and who turned out to be right. The practical upshot of this is: In order to accurately compare oneself with Galieo, it is not enough to simply be persecuted, one must also be right.

You have yet to provide any evidence that your position is right, or even tenable. I look forward to you presenting evidence for your claims.

Fair comment David - here is my response





This Theory is about The Mega Instinct; a Moral Instinct, made up of 7 Mega Values (or Mega Motivations), which makes us uniquely & fully human; a controlling Instinct which is both immanent within - and transcendent of - all our other instincts.



Mega Theory a revolutionary idea.

Darwin's old Theory of Evolution (& the monolithic body of knowledge which has now grown out of it) will be replaced by this new Theory of Revolution - Gailileo-style.
Mega Theory fundamentally changes the way we see Ourselves, and our place in the 
Universe - just as Galileo fundamentally changed the way we saw Ourselves on Earth, in relation to the Sun.
Man is not just a Human Animal; Man is a Moral Being. It is the human difference.

Newton's Theory was a good one - like Darwin's - but it was replaced by a better one - Einstein's Relativity Theory. And so with Mega Theory.

Mega Theory corresponds with the truth more than Darwin's, Freud's, Skinner's & Dawkins'.

The Theory's foundation is primarily one of philosophy (eg Plato's Forms), although it clearly impacts on other disciplines, such as Psychology and Biology (eg Maslow's 'Metamotivations', Freud's 'Unconscious' & Darwin's Theory of Evolution).

Mega Theory is designed to revolutionise how we look at ourselves - no longer 'Animal Man' (eg Darwin, Freud, Skinner) but Moral Man (Mega Man).


What is the Theory about ?

This Theory is about The Mega Instinct; a Moral Instinct, made up of 7 Mega Values (or Mega Motivations), which makes us uniquely & fully human; a controlling Instinct which is both immanent within - and transcendent of - all our other instincts.

The Theory shows how we use our Mega Instinct to discover what we value - and what motivates us - by applying The Anselm Acid Test.

What are 3 of its Main Themes ?

1. We are uniquely endowed with a Mega Instinct - a moral instinct made up of 7 Values - which is both immanent within, and transcendent of, all other instincts.
Mega Theory states there are seven “moral structures”, hard-wired within the Mega Instinct; the controlling moral instinct which is both immanent within - and transcendent of - all other instincts within our biology (or Plato's 'soul', mind & body, personality, psyche....)

2. This Theory of Moral Realism stands in direct opposition to Moral Relativism.

3. Without the Mega Instinct, we would have made ourselves extinct many thousands of years ago.

What are 7 of its Main Aims & Objectives

1. To produce a working Textbook on Mega Theory & The Moral Instinct - 'up & running' by the South Stoke Festival of Thought 2013.- to mark the 50th Anniversary of CEM Joad (1891-1953) - author of Transcendence-Immanence Theory.

2. To establish a Moral Theory which will vanquish the obsolete philosophy of Moral Relativism, and
revolutionise & radically transform the philosophy of Moral Realism.

3. To create a ground-breaking Moral Theory, to be considered one of the most important contributions to the revolution in Humanities & Social Sciences - especially Philosophy & Psychology - in the early 21st century

4. To help spark a revolution in philosophy & religion, through 'The Mega Instinct" idea, challenging the 'Relativist' approach of Wittgenstein & The Vienna School; the dominant idealogy underlying Western culture for the last 70 years.

5. To help spark a revolution in psychology & the social sciences, through his Mega Motivation Theory - a 'by-product' of Mega Theory - by challenging (& vanquishing) the 'scientific management' approach to behaviour; the dominant corporate idealogy which prevailed in the late 20th century - and still does.

6. To help influence many other related disciplines, by establishing The Gatwick City School - a school of thought in which Mega Theory & Moral Realsm are uniquely combined "to provide cutting-edge solutions to 21st century problems".

7. To show that a greater understanding, and application, of Mega Theory will be a critical pre-condition to Humanity's survival in the 21st century.

What is this Theory doing differently, or in a more innovative way, or better than, existing Theories ?

Chomsky's Language Theory, Pinker's "Language Instinct", Hauser's "Moral Minds" & Maslow's 'Metamotivations' are firmly rooted in our biology & psychology.

Symonds "Mega Instinct" Theory - with CEM Joad's 'Tanscendence-Immanence' - is rooted firmly both in our biology & psychology (immanent within) and outside of them (transcendent of)..."unboundedness".

Noam Chomsky has written : “We are after all biological organisms not angels . . . If humans are part of the natural world, not supernatural beings, then human intelligence has its scope and limits, determined by initial design. We can thus anticipate certain questions will not fall within [our] cognitive reach, just as rats are unable to run mazes with numerical properties, lacking the appropriate concepts. Such questions, we might call ‘mysteries-for-humans’ just as some questions pose ‘mysteries-for-rats.’ Among these mysteries may be questions we raise, and others we do not know how to formulate properly or at all...
We will discover what we can about the nature of the world, and, among the truths about it, I believe we will find that part of our genetic capacity, which evolved over millennia, is that CERTAIN MORAL PRINCIPLES ARE ASCRIBED IN IT; probably genetically determined.
To try to discover them is, of course, a big task.

Teilhard de Chardin - "We are Spiritual Beings having a Human Experience, not Human Beings having a Spiritual Experience"
Genesis 1:27 - "So God Created Man In His Own Image..."

The Mega Instinct is rooted both in our biology (immanent within) and beyond it (transcendent of).

The 7 Mega Values (or Mega Motivations) are represented by the 7 Colours of the Rainbow - and form the maor part of the book.

The Mega Instinct is not only biologically immanent, it is also transcendent - and controls (or can control) all other instincts.

It is both Theory & Practice combined. We use our Mega Instinct to discover what we ultimately value, & what ultimately motivates us - by applying The Anselm Acid Test.


Applying The Anselm Acid Test to discover what motivates us (& why), and to discover what we most value (& why) - using our Mega Instinct ("If we don't use it, we lose it").


Genesis to The Present - Diary of Main Events - "Footnotes to Plato" - History of Moral Ideas - Biography

Music & The Arts, Creativity, Wonder & Awe, Fulfilment & Inspiration, Innocence & Purity


Genesis to The Present - Diary of Main Events - "Footnotes to Plato" - History of Moral Ideas - Biography (eg Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela)

Liberty, Democracy, Human Rights, Responsibility & Duty, Power, Control & Influence, Decision, Choice & Space, Individuality & Uniqueness


Genesis to The Present - Diary of Main Events - "Footnotes to Plato" - History of Moral Ideas - Biography

Pleasure & Desire, Fun & Humour, Entertainment, Confidence, Enthusiasm, Hope


Genesis to The Present - Diary of Main Events - "Footnotes to Plato" - History of Moral Ideas - Biography (eg Sports personalities)

Survival & Well-Being, Health, Energy, Excitement, Thrill & Risk, Sex, Self-Preservation, Profit & Growth, Courage, Aliveness & Vitality, Consciousness & Unconsciousness, Awareness & Dreams


Genesis to The Present - Diary of Main Events - "Footnotes to Plato" - History of Moral Ideas - Biography (eg Christ)

Goodness, Esteem, Pride, Belongingness, Approval, Valued, Acceptance, Compassion, Frienship, Kindness, Respect, Dignity, Selflessness


Gensesis to The Present - Diary of Main Events - "Footnotes to Plato" - History of Moral Ideas - Biography (eg Gandhi)

Safety, Security, Protection, Stability, Reconciliation, Balance, Consensus, Agreement, Harmony, Comfort, Relaxation


Genesis to The Present - Diary of Main Events - "Footnotes to Plato" - History of Moral Ideas - Biography (eg Socrates, Joad - "Third Class Socrates")

Reality, Knowledge, Facts, Justice, Fairness, Understanding, Purpose


.1 MEGA THEORY states we are uniquely endowed with a Mega Instinct - a moral instinct made up of seven Mega Motivations (or Mega Values) - which is both immanent within, and transcendent of, all other instincts

.2 MEGA THEORY also states these seven Mega Values exist objectively and independently of the human mind (Moral Realism) - and our subjective actions, thoughts, ideas and beliefs discover (rather than create) those moral Values eg Plato's Recollection Theory.

.3 MEGA THEORY states these seven Values are objectively real - such as Truth, Beauty and Love - and we are subjectively conscious of these Values through our Mega Instinct - a kind of 'Seventh Sense'.
Tarski's Correspondence Theory of Truth, Popper's Scientific Method and Joad's Immanence-Transcendence (IT) Theory, are closely associated with this Mega Theory - along with Chomsky's Theory of Language Acquisition.

.4 MEGA THEORY states we are motivated by seven perennial Values (Mega Motivations), of which we can conceive of nothing greater :

1. Beauty
2. Freedom
3. Happiness
4. Life
5. Love
6. Peace
7. Truth

.5 MEGA THEORY states we are motivated by that which we most value.

If we discover what we value, we will discover what motivates us. 'The Anselm Acid Test' is used to discover what we most value; and thus we can discover what motivates us.

.6 MEGA THEORY is based on a simple idea - so simple it can look like a truism :



It is critical for us, therefore, to understand what motivates us, and why. Equally, it is critical to understand what we most value.

.7 MEGA THEORY, in practice, states we discover what motivates us the most, and what we most value, by simply applying the Anselm Acid Test - using our Moral Instinct - by asking ourselves the following other words, we are using & applying our Moral Instinct when we ask this Anselm Acid Test Question :

"In my mind, can I conceive of anything more important, or greater than .... ?" (Insert any word you consider important eg health, wealth, security etc)

You will find that your chosen words will fall eventually into one or other of these seven 'baskets' (with some occasional overlap)
Our Mega Instinct will naturally put these 'baskets' - the seven Mega Values (or Mega Motivations) which make up our Mega Instinct :

1. Beauty
2. Freedom
3. Happiness
4. Life
5. Love
6. Peace
7. Truth


A description of the target market

Who is your Theory primarily aimed at?

Those involved in :

(a) Humanities (eg Philosophy & Religion),

(b) Social Sciences (eg Psychology, Politics & Government, Business Management & Occupational Psychology, Employment & Training, Self-Help/Health Psychology, Cognitive Science & Biolinguistics),

(c) Education (eg Teaching), History (eg of Ideas)

Who will buy it?

Educational & Academic Markets (eg Schools & Universities) & Libraries.

Who will read it?

Students & Professional in (a), (b) & (c) above.

It is aimed at both an undergraduate and postgraduate student audience.

The book would be used on primarily degree courses in (a), (b) & (c) above.

It is research which will sell well to academic libraries

The subject area of the proposal is widely taught & researched.

This subject has international appeal outside my home country - especially the United States.


A list of the main competing books

We would like some indication that you are familiar with competition to your proposed Theory.
What are their strengths & weaknesses?
What makes your Theory better then the existing competition ?

The biggest weakness of competing books, like "Moral Minds" by Marc Hauser, is that they are only rooted in biology.
The strength of Mega Theory - the unique selling point (USP) - is that the Mega Instinct is not only immanent within biology, but also transcendent of it...which opens up new horizons.


1. "The Babbitt Warren" by CEM Joad (Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner -1926) - complementing rather than competing - in which Joad analyses America by Plato's Truth, Beauty & Goodness. My book structure is very similar to Joad's chapter headings.

Defence of Reason, an Affirmation of Values, and a Plea for Philosophy' by CEM Joad

1a "Appeal to Philosophers" - Aristotelian Paper (1940)

1b "Recovery of Belief - A Restatement of Christian Philosophy" - Faber & Faber (1952)

1c "Guide to Moral & Political Philosophy" (1936) & Teach Tourself Philosophy - by CEM Joad


2. "The Language Instinct" by Steven Pinker

3. "The God Instinct" by Tom Stella

4. "Moral Minds" by Marc Hauser

5. "Moral Politics" by George Lakoff

6. "Beyond The Farther Reaches Of Human Nature" ('Metamotivations') - Abraham Maslow

7. Institute of Moralogy, Japan


viewtopic.php?f=12&t=535&start=790 (21.12.10)


Am I supposed to actually read all of this?  


Aren't there some sort of cliff notes you can throw in.....

I think those are the cliff notes, Dustin...

In a nutshell Dustin - just for you :


We all have a Mega Instinct which controls all other instincts - and its this Moral Instinct which makes us uniquely human.


If truth abides in these ideas, then Dawkins ideas are in deep, deep trouble. 


This Theory is about The Mega Instinct; a Moral Instinct, made up of 7 Mega Values (or Mega Motivations), which makes us uniquely & fully human; a controlling Instinct which is both immanent within - and transcendent of - all our other instincts.

Which part of the brain is involved in Freud's "Unconscious" ?
Science and Religion, as I see it, are not in conflict - and neither have all the answers. Fun lies in both - "always new stuff to learn"

Interesting, but ultimately flawed. Not only can I think of several 'ultimate values' that people can hold that are not within the seven 'Mega instincts' (Knowledge, for one.), but a number of these supposedly uniquely human attributes have been observed as being valued in non-human beings.


I challenge anyone to claim that animals do not value Life. As for Love, while we cannot measure emotions directly there are numerous examples of animals mating for life (swans, wolves) and showing definite affection and loyalty towards one another and their offspring.


Furthermore, the idea that we have values and those values motivate us is hardly earthshaking news. Nor does it run counter to evolutionary theory. The development of empathy, altruism, love and so forth are adequately explained in evolutionary terms via social grouping theory.


You're not providing any evidence that these mega instincts are in any way obtained from without the human brain or society, nor that they are absolutes. Different societies throughout history have valued these seven concepts at differing levels, depending on the society and culture. Slavery is certainly the antithesis of freedom, yet slavery was endemic throughout the world until very recently in human history. Likewise, while all cultures may value beauty, they may not agree at all on what, precisely, is beautiful. Look at the lip discs (or plates) used by numerous cultural groups throughout history and currently used by tribes such as the Mursi people of Ethiopia. I would not consider such a modification beautiful, but to a member of her tribe, it would be.

definitive proof animals protect and care for their offspring.

What's that got to do with being moral, Dustin ?

Of course it is "ultimately flawed" David - it's a theory dreamed up by a man - both are fallible, & thus both are imperfect.


I maintain this Theory corresponds with reality, more so than others on the subject (but I would say that, wouldn't I ?!), and is the least implausible explanation of the universe (inner & outer).


I'm sure a less flawed theory will replace it.

Do you realize that you haven't provided any evidence for your claim here? You have just restated the claim. At this point your claim is just a hypothesis, not a theory. For us to even consider your extraordinary claim (which goes against mountain of evidence to the contrary) you are going to need to provide evidence in support of your claim.


I don't mean to be insulting, but I find it to be a common trait among Theists when asked for evidence they just restate their claim with more gusto. If that is how Galileo behaved then history might have gone more like this:


The Church: The Sun orbits the Earth, so sayeth the Bible.


Galileo: No, the Earth and all the other planets orbit the Sun.


The Church: Blasphemer! Prove it.


Galileo: Okay. So you know how the Bible suggests that the Sun orbits the Earth?


The Church: Yeah?


Galileo: And Joshua is said to have stopped the Sun so that it didn't orbit the Earth for a day?


The Church: Yeah?


Galileo: Well, that's wrong. The Earth actually orbits the Sun.


The Church: What an idiot. Let's burn this guy already.


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