Several people are superstitious or participate in superstitious demeanors, even without being cognizant of these actions. More than half of Americans admit to being superstitious, according to a recent Gallup poll. Superstitious deportment is an action one engages in to produce a specific outcome, such as knocking on wood, avoiding a black cat, reading horoscopes, having a lucky item, and many more. Not only that, but superstitions additionally include expecting an outcome often out of your control, and doing things to influence the latter.
Contrary to popular notion, superstitions are not harmful, in fact, they are beneficial. For instance, it has been proven to improve all aspects of life, including community, physical health, and mental health.
There are many different communities in the world, several of which being, or cognate to being, superstitious. To begin, Halloween is an incredibly well-known tradition, that is, the celebration of witches, ghosts, and other entities stemmed from superstitions. This tradition assembles people together as a community, to celebrate their credences.
Smaller groups are also made, such as hardcore sports fans who follow the same behaviors related to the games, explained by social psychologist and associate professor of behavioral science at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, Jane Risen, ‘Sometimes superstitions create a sense of group identity by connecting you to other people’. Therefore, superstitious behaviors are propitious towards groups, allowing people with shared interests to be brought together. Furthermore, superstitions often lead to stronger faith, or ultimately, religious beliefs. Many different communities are built upon these, all having their own beliefs, such as Catholicism, Buddhism, and several more. For certain regions, religion, and consequently superstition, is an incredibly consequential part of their life, proven by nationally representative Gallup polls. In the study, when asked ‘Is religion an important part of your daily life?’ over 99% of Egyptians said yes. For this reason, superstitions are beneficial, if not needed, towards religious communities, as it is a component of many’s daily lives. Besides building communities, superstitions withal benefit physical health.
In today’s world of medicine, there are several different alternatives to the typical remedies, that have shown to often be better than their medical counterparts. Homeopathy, invented by Samuel Christian Hahnemann uses doses of dilutions made from non-medicinal ingredients, such as herbs, animal substances, and more. Similarly to superstitions, the results of the many positive results of homeopathy, proved by a Dutch study where epidemiologists analyzed 105 studies of homeopathic treatment, where 81 of them showed that the patients benefited from the treatments. This proves that homeopathic cures are highly efficacious, and without the negative side effects of many prevalent medications, these are therefore better. Likewise, the placebo effect also stems from superstitions, that is a product of an expected outcome. The mind essentially tricks you into believing that a fictitious treatment genuinely works. Researchers found that placebos have many effects on the human body and well-being, and doctors have been utilizing them more for that reason. In fact, the Nordic Cochrane Centre, University of Copenhagen asked 772 arbitrary Danish clinicians, asking them about their use of placebos, results showing that 86% of them have used a placebo once, and 48% have used them more than ten times, both within a year. To emphasize, professionally trained doctors have been using a superstition based cure, which proves the benefits the placebo effect has. Along with physical health, superstitious behaviors also help with mental health.
Superstitions are often utilized as coping mechanisms in reaction to the factors of situations and their outcomes following those demeanors. As part of human nature, when people don’t know the outcome of something, they will often try to control it to make them feel better about the situation. A sense of control is something most people search for, which is given by superstitious behaviors. Because the desideratum of being in control is granted, anxiety is in turn lowered, a Connecticut psychologist, Stuart Vyse, verbalizes, “Superstitious behavior does help with anxiety. If you care very much about the outcome [of an event] but it’s unlikely to have a direct effect on the outcome” For this reason, superstitious comportments are often used as ways to reduce stress and anxiety, improving one’s mental salubrity. Often, after a prosperous event where there were specific conditions, people will want those conditions to be tantamount for a similar event so that they succeed. This is often seen in sports fans who wear the same article of clothing or who eat the same food for games, to try and influence their team to win again. Albeit these conditions have little to no influence on the outcome itself, they allow the person in question to feel like it does, increasing their confidence. A study led in 2010 by Damisch, Stoberock, and Mussweiler found that using good luck superstitions increased confidence, and in turn improved performance. There is no harm in doing a simple thing that makes one think they’ll do better .
In short, there have been many proven benefits of superstitions. Consequently, we can come to the conclusion that superstitions originate from the goal to improve the human mind. The proof that has led to this conclusion is the creation of communities, and amelioration in health, both physical and psychological.
Cite this Superstitious Behavior Does Help With Anxiety
Superstitious Behavior Does Help With Anxiety. (2021, May 14). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/superstitious-behavior-does-help-with-anxiety/