30 August 2006


I have known for a long time now that all superstition is bunk. Many people, however, don't seem to realise that they are superstitious. One cannot have any form of blind faith without being superstitious.

In the past there were reasons for superstitions. The further back in time you go the fewer coherent systems for describing the mysteries of the Earth and sky are available. People invented their own types of descriptive 'systems'. Without a scientific basis for those systems they concocted groups of deities (or individual deities) as primitive ways of explaining their environment and understanding themselves. Most saw their future (and therefore all their actions?) as being governed by 'higher powers'. They were helpless pawns at the mercy of wrathful gods. Do good and you got your reward in the next world. Do ill and you got your punishment. Either way it was out of your control.

Today we have no such excuses. Superstition is infantile. I don't just mean the big stuff like believing in a god but also the small, corrosive superstitions of everyday life. Black cats crossing paths and Friday 13ths, dropped cutlery and subtraversed ladders. All bunk and all inexcusable.

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