History: Science Tells Us
Although superstitions are a normal part of human nature, they are avoidable. They are put off by common sense and planning logically.
As a study, psychologists struggled with defining superstitions in the 19th century but couldn’t come to any strict conclusions or consensus. The study didn’t jell until the 1950s.
Magic and superstition were hard to distinguish from religion and science. These two phenomena –magic and religion– were closely associated throughout history. The early priests in the ancient cultures of Egypt, Rome and Greece used magic to inspire faith and cement the allegiance of the faithful. They may have created a weeping statue, told of perpetually burning lamps in tombs or used faith healing. There were divine places, omens and rituals used by many charlatans.
Magicians use illusions to create tricks and clearly identify themselves as performers.
Today, even popular religion continues to use rituals, such as the activities surrounding a burial. People dress the dead, use certain flowers and follow burial traditions, giving mourners a way to release the emotional responses of loss and suffering.