Photo courtesy of Gary O. Rollefson

Archaeological evidence suggests that Ain Ghazal’s population during the Middle Pre-Pottery Neolithic B period (7200–6500 B.C.) was organized into family or clan groups. But as the population grew larger, during the Late Pre-Pottery Neolithic B period (6500–6000 B.C.), new social arrangements were required to maintain harmony in the community. We thus see a transition from smaller, private, family shrines, like the one shown earlier in this article, to the large community temple shown here (compare with next two photos). Changes in religious worship apparently provided an anodyne for a potentially painful social fragmentation.