When did our ape ancestors become human and start believing in God, heaven and hell etc? That is the question the scientist Richard Dawkins poses to the Catholic journalist Christina Odone in today’s Saturday Guardian debate. Dawkins asks:
“At what stage in evolutionary history do you think that started? With Homo erectus? Homo sapiens? There must have been some sort of divide.”
Odone responds as follows:
“I believe it’s about free will – it was when primitive people began to make moral choices.”
Interestingly, when discussing the story of Adam, the Qur’an on several occasions mentions that Adam disobeyed His Creator’s order to refrain from eating the fruit of a tree ie it is implicit in the story that he had been granted the free will to obey and disobey.