Tuesday, January 23, 2007

The Superstitious, Their Food, and Their Medicine

A recent survey for the doctoral dissertation of Marieke Saher at the University of Helsinki found that superstitious people—defined as those who believe in the paranormal, "such as astrology, telepathy or palm reading"—were more likely to (1) have positive attitudes toward organic food, (2) have negative attitudes toward genetically modified food, (3) believe in the power of alternative medicine, and (4) (perhaps explaining all the others) conceive of various disciplines of science as interrelated and unbounded:
A person who thinks in this manner might, for example, describe the physical concept of energy as a living entity, as if it belonged to the sphere of biology, or through the concept of evil, a psychological attribute. According to Saher, such thinking does not necessarily indicate that a person is poorly educated, because rational knowledge is not linked to these beliefs in any way. Some respondents simultaneously held conflicting superstitious and rational notions about certain phenomena, without the rational thoughts exercising any overriding effect on the superstitious elements.
Link (via the Anomalist). Unfortunately this doesn't explain why the food is so good in superstitious Romania.

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Image credits: The Magician, tarot card, courtesy Wikipedia.


Blogger Marisa said...


7:31 PM  

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