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Still Waters

How superstitions spread

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Still Waters

Ancient Roman leaders once made decisions about important events, such as when to hold elections or where to build new cities, based on the presence or flight patterns of birds. Builders often omit the thirteenth floor from their floor plans, and many pedestrians go well out of their way to avoid walking under a ladder.

While it's widely recognized that superstitions like these are not rational, many persist, guiding the behavior of large groups of people even today.

https://phys.org/news/2019-04-superstitions.html

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sci-nerd

My team won their game today. But the goal wasn't scored until I opened my first beer 1 hour into the game.

I knew that would happen. I even said to myself, when I opened the beer: All right, it's open, you can score now!

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Desertrat56

I remember a story my boss told to a group of us to demonstrate her frustration when she would ask someone why they did something and the answer was "We always do it that way." which was usually  not true to begin with.

The story is called the 5th monkey.  5 monkeys are put in a cage and they are fed fruits and vegetables at a table.  On another table are always bananas but any time the monkeys touch the bananas someone outside the cage hoses them all down with a fire hose.  So in a day none of the monkeys take a banana.  One monkey is removed and a new one is put it.  The first time it reaches for a banana the other monkeys beat the hell out of it.  Eventually they have replaced all the original monkeys and still any new monkey that goes near the bananas gets beaten up.  None of the monkeys know why, they just know that is what the response to touching a banana.

Probably that is how a lot of superstitions get started, just like at that job people who left the job did not train their successors so no one knew what to do or why.

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MWoo7
17 minutes ago, Desertrat56 said:

beat the hell out of it

   I was just thinking is this story going to be worth my click

OMG ! hahahahahahaaaa!~: D seldom disapppppointed in this site hehehehee EXCELLENT !

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sci-nerd

Are you all paying attention?

Beer is good, banana is bad!

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XenoFish

How do superstitions spread? Memetically of course.

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the13bats

i knew a rather pompous fellow, he really thought he was smarter than everyone else, he would play grammar cop, spew his IQ  and boast of being in mensa,

this guy was also so "superstitious" he wouldnt drive or ride in a car on friday the 13th, he subscribed to all the common ones, ladders, black cats, you name it, i found it very odd, of course i have a house full of black cats and find "13" lucky.

most superstions while the orginal provenance might not be known to all are far from blind, most people even ones who do not subscribe to superstitions will know the stories, a broken mirror gives years of bad luck, bad luck to walk under a ladder, so i do not believe its blind conditioning but rather just contagen or spread like any urban legend.

if you ask "fred" hey, why did you avoid walking under that ladder he will snap back "its bad luck" not "i dont know why".

 

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Aaron2016

Best scene ever (3rd Rock from the Sun)

Skip to 18:30

 

 

 

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sci-nerd
Posted (edited)
23 minutes ago, the13bats said:

i knew a rather pompous fellow, he really thought he was smarter than everyone else, he would play grammar cop, spew his IQ  and boast of being in mensa,

this guy was also so "superstitious" he wouldnt drive or ride in a car on friday the 13th, he subscribed to all the common ones, ladders, black cats, you name it, i found it very odd, of course i have a house full of black cats and find "13" lucky.

most superstions while the orginal provenance might not be known to all are far from blind, most people even ones who do not subscribe to superstitions will know the stories, a broken mirror gives years of bad luck, bad luck to walk under a ladder, so i do not believe its blind conditioning but rather just contagen or spread like any urban legend.

if you ask "fred" hey, why did you avoid walking under that ladder he will snap back "its bad luck" not "i dont know why".

13 is really the most stupid to attribute bad luck. It is based on Judas, the discipel who allegedly betrayed Jesus. They were 12 without him.

Besides, Jesus and the 12 disciples are based on the sun and the 12 months. So making it a day, a Friday, makes no sense.

Edited by sci-nerd
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quiXilver

I suspect they spread just the way rumors do, word of mouth, out of a desire to share something salacious, oddly strange or seemingly exceptional to earn a moment of attention among peers and strangers.  Probably with about as much veracity and usefulness.

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Desertrat56
17 hours ago, the13bats said:

i knew a rather pompous fellow, he really thought he was smarter than everyone else, he would play grammar cop, spew his IQ  and boast of being in mensa,

this guy was also so "superstitious" he wouldnt drive or ride in a car on friday the 13th, he subscribed to all the common ones, ladders, black cats, you name it, i found it very odd, of course i have a house full of black cats and find "13" lucky.

most superstions while the orginal provenance might not be known to all are far from blind, most people even ones who do not subscribe to superstitions will know the stories, a broken mirror gives years of bad luck, bad luck to walk under a ladder, so i do not believe its blind conditioning but rather just contagen or spread like any urban legend.

if you ask "fred" hey, why did you avoid walking under that ladder he will snap back "its bad luck" not "i dont know why".

 

The guy you describe is not a thinker, in spite of his supposed IQ.  Superstitious people are not thinkers.  Thinkers want to know why, and if there is no answer then it may not apply.

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Desertrat56
17 hours ago, Aaron2016 said:

Best scene ever (3rd Rock from the Sun)

Skip to 18:30

 

 

 

LMAO!  I got a chain letter when I was 11.  My friend was with me when I opened it and I threw it away saying this is stupid.  My friend was so upset.  She was the one who had sent it to me.  Somehow our friendship survived that.

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the13bats
On 4/18/2019 at 6:27 PM, sci-nerd said:

13 is really the most stupid to attribute bad luck. It is based on Judas, the discipel who allegedly betrayed Jesus. They were 12 without him.

Besides, Jesus and the 12 disciples are based on the sun and the 12 months. So making it a day, a Friday, makes no sense.

 

6 hours ago, Desertrat56 said:

The guy you describe is not a thinker, in spite of his supposed IQ.  Superstitious people are not thinkers.  Thinkers want to know why, and if there is no answer then it may not apply.

well, i wasnt buddies with the guy but was told that by sorces that were good, i found it odd too as i do right or wrong for some reason believe people who are "smarter" and very loud and pompous about it would not fall for things or do things i feel a smart person would know better about.

another story, my buddy who died, he was alcoholic, chain smoker,  high school drop out lived at parents home and while posed as a photographer was a dish washer bar back, all the work he could get and hold down,  didnt go in for superstition.

his mother a rather mean spirited lady motivated on status, also would boast how intelligent she was chained smoked, i would badger her about smoking being bad and she would go into a song and dance that was i a "dummy" who believed that propaganda, etc,  she had emphysema.

my buddy died of a brain bleeder,  his kind long suffereing dad died soon after, lung cancer, was a non smoker, years later mom died of smoking related illness.

my thinking on who is "smart" is flawed.

 

 

6 hours ago, Desertrat56 said:

LMAO!  I got a chain letter when I was 11.  My friend was with me when I opened it and I threw it away saying this is stupid.  My friend was so upset.  She was the one who had sent it to me.  Somehow our friendship survived that.

i recall barney fife got one on the andy griffith show.

right into the 80s we got them a lot in orlando,

i was young in the 70s my grandmother opens and starts reading one, it states how so in so broke the chain and this bad fortune happened to them but so in so kept the chain going and had great luck, she gets fone reading and i ask if this is anonymous, floating in the mail, how was it updated with what people did?

she laughed, balled it up saying, thanks alot killjoy.

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Habitat

Chain letters, well that's something that seems to have faded out. I never got one, but know people who got several, and it seemed to worry them. Straight to the bin, is what it deserves..

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Desertrat56
Posted (edited)
17 hours ago, the13bats said:

 

well, i wasnt buddies with the guy but was told that by sorces that were good, i found it odd too as i do right or wrong for some reason believe people who are "smarter" and very loud and pompous about it would not fall for things or do things i feel a smart person would know better about.

another story, my buddy who died, he was alcoholic, chain smoker,  high school drop out lived at parents home and while posed as a photographer was a dish washer bar back, all the work he could get and hold down,  didnt go in for superstition.

his mother a rather mean spirited lady motivated on status, also would boast how intelligent she was chained smoked, i would badger her about smoking being bad and she would go into a song and dance that was i a "dummy" who believed that propaganda, etc,  she had emphysema.

my buddy died of a brain bleeder,  his kind long suffereing dad died soon after, lung cancer, was a non smoker, years later mom died of smoking related illness.

my thinking on who is "smart" is flawed.

 

 

i recall barney fife got one on the andy griffith show.

right into the 80s we got them a lot in orlando,

i was young in the 70s my grandmother opens and starts reading one, it states how so in so broke the chain and this bad fortune happened to them but so in so kept the chain going and had great luck, she gets fone reading and i ask if this is anonymous, floating in the mail, how was it updated with what people did?

she laughed, balled it up saying, thanks alot killjoy.

People who have to proclaim their intelligence or brag about it are not intelligent, they are insecure and need attention.  I have run in to a couple of men who had to be sure I knew what their IQ was, the were not smart people or thinkers.  I never understood why they needed me to know their IQ.  Both of them got chastised by me for telling me as I know it is not a true measurement of intelligence.  Common sense is more important than how well you do on a skewed standardized test based on social expectations, rather than actual intelligence. 

The same can be said about anyone who proclaims loudly and often that they are ....   fill in the blank, they are not and just want people to believe they are for some reason, usually to get money or something for nothing.

Edited by Desertrat56

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Susanc241

I am happy to walk under a ladder, but I make sure that nothing is likely to land on my head by looking up and checking whether anyone is on that ladder.  It is probably the only superstition that makes sense in that regard.  The only cats I have had were both black.  I have never understood the fear that can be generated by opening an umbrella indoors, putting new shoes on a table, passing someone on the stairs, two knives crossed on a table, throwing salt over the shoulder if you spill some, having to say something or other to a magpie if you see one (don’t know too much about that one) and so on.  All part of the rich tapestry of life!

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the13bats
39 minutes ago, Desertrat56 said:

People who have to proclaim their intelligence or brag about it are not intelligent, they are insecure and need attention.  I have run in to a couple of men who had to be sure I knew what their IQ was, the were not smart people or thinkers.  I never understood why they needed me to know their IQ.  Both of them got chastised by me for telling me as I know it is not a true measurement of intelligence.  Common sense is more important than how well you do on a skewed standardized test based on social expectations, rather than actual intelligence. 

The same can be said about anyone who proclaims loudly and often that they are ....   fill in the blank, they are not and just want people to believe they are for some reason, usually to get money or something for nothing.

i was on a specific car forum for years and a lot of those guys had to start any opinion with their alleged credentials, years in the hobby, cars owned or in the biz etc,

the irony were these were they ones fullest of bs and the least in the know.

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Desertrat56
3 minutes ago, the13bats said:

i was on a specific car forum for years and a lot of those guys had to start any opinion with their alleged credentials, years in the hobby, cars owned or in the biz etc,

the irony were these were they ones fullest of bs and the least in the know.

Yep.

 

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