For the love of God

Chapel Lord knows whether this new research may or may not mean anything but it was weird and counter-intuitive, and thus a good Z-Files candidate.

Researchers at Stanford have published an article in the journal Psychological Science that suggests people are more likely to engage in risky behavior if they are first primed – even in a subtle way – with the idea of God or the divine. This runs counter to previous research that suggests that religious people are more risk-averse.

Apparently the idea of God “makes people feel safe or protected,” according to one of the study authors. And this probably has little to do with whether the person actually believes in God or not.

For example, the phrase “God only knows what you’re missing!” apparently prompted increased interest in a fictitious ad for skydiving classes.

So if you are a brand that is whose product or service involves some element of risk, for all that is good and holy, please take this into consideration. The results could be miraculous.