I found some articles today in "Psychology today":

Are you superstitious?

I mean it's Friday 13th, isn't it? ;-)

The authors entertain the idea that prayer might be effective because it raises our belief level even when the belief in a supernatural power itself is false.

What is your take on that?

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Magical thinking isn't necessarily a bad thing.  From the article:

You wouldn't want to be at the skeptic end of the spectrum anyway. "To be totally 'unmagical' is very unhealthy," says Peter Brugger, head of neuropsychology at University Hospital Zurich. He has data, for example, strongly linking lack of magical ideation to anhedonia, the inability to experience pleasure. "Students who are 'not magical' don't typically enjoy going to parties and so on," he says. He's also found that there's a key chemical involved in magical thinking. Dopamine, a neurotransmitter that the brain uses to tag experiences as meaningful, floods the brains of schizophrenics, who see significance in everything, but merely trickles in many depressives, who struggle to find value in everyday life. In one experiment, paranormal believers (who are high in dopamine) were more prone than nonbelievers to spot nonexistent faces when looking at jumbled images and also were less likely to miss the faces when they really were there. Everyone spotted more faces when given dopamine-boosting drugs. Brugger argues that the ability to see patterns and make loose associations enhances creativity and also serves a practical function: "If you're on the grassland, it's always better to assume that a tiger is there."

Yes I also would like to know what is illusion, to be a dreamer who wakes up in the morning. 

Isn't this just a lot of cage rattling for the sake of cage rattling?  Stop feeding the trolls and they perish.  I mean, we all already know if you step on a crack in the pavement your mother ain't going to slip a disc over it.

I don't know... I tend to think blind faith is entertaining chaotic spirituality.  Spirituality when it has a real focus (ie. Zen) is a fantastic thing.  However, I do believe once you base spiritualist ideas on intangible things then you're almost creating a land of fairy stories which leaves way to making up ones ethics as they go along.

I spent the day walking under ladders, breaking mirrors, and throwing black cats in my path  - the day was as boring as Thursday the 14th.

The Freethought Society often has Anti-Superstition Parties on Friday the 13th.



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