superstition

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superstition,

an irrational belief or practice resulting from ignorance or fear of the unknown. The validity of superstitions is based on belief in the power of magic and witchcraft and in such invisible forces as spirits and demons. A common superstition in the Middle Ages was that the devil could enter a person during that unguarded moment when that person was sneezing; this could be avoided if anyone present immediately appealed to the name of God. The tradition of saying "God bless you" when someone sneezes still remains today.
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superstition

1. irrational belief usually founded on ignorance or fear and characterized by obsessive reverence for omens, charms, etc.
2. a notion, act or ritual that derives from such belief
3. any irrational belief, esp with regard to the unknown
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
(10.) Religiosity, Locus of Control, and Superstitious Belief. www.uwlax.edu/URC/JUR-online/PDF/2004/stanke.pdf.
Every culture carries some superstitious beliefs, and Chinese culture is no exception.
In addition to reinforcement contingencies, superstitious beliefs are associated with personality traits.
(2007), "A test of social cognitive theory reciprocal and sequential effects: Hope, superstitious belief and environmental factors among lottery gamblers in Thailand", Journal of Gambling Studies, vol.
The list of superstitious belief may not be growing, but it is still fairly long and holds influence over the individuals in a significant way: reluctance to walk under ladders, seeing a black cat and stirring a pot counter-clockwise, to name but a few.
A CEPD official said the average birthrate in Taiwan rose to 1.06 last year and will reach 1.24 this year due to the superstitious belief that 2012, "Year of the Dragon," is propitious for parenthood, with the birthrate expected to drop thereafter.
Dare I suggest it rests with the triumph of reason over archaic and medieval superstitious belief in some mythical supernatural being?
Lita, who wears eight, revealed his life is ruled by a superstitious belief in the number, which the England Under-21 star freely admitted marks him out as a bit of an oddball.
Dr George Erdos, of Newcastle University, said the names parents chose reflected the dreams they held for their children: "There is a superstitious belief that giving a child a particular name can influence their destiny.
He said some devotees try to get a strand of the rope due to the superstitious belief that it will bring them luck.
Those with an almost superstitious belief in the worth of the monarchy (and its many hangers on) simply perpetuate a system that encourages the belief in an outdated and damaging class system.
The act was reportedly carried out with a superstitious belief of curing a disease the baby boy was suffering from.