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Different Kinds of Superstition

  • Date Submitted: 04/29/2013 05:05 AM
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a Few Kind Words For Superstition Summary Essay
In his essay “A Few Kind Words for Superstition,” Robertson Davies
focuses on people’s attitude towards superstitions and the four main types of superstition. Through his essay, he implies that people may hesitate to admit in believing superstitions, yet it is something they take part in, as shown at the university he attended.

Davies explains how unreasonable things such as Parapsychology,
UFO’S, miracle cures, and transcendental meditation are disapproved in our societies; however, superstition is slightly objected by many people. He states there are four forms of superstition, as proven by theologians. The first one is “Vain Observances,” which is formed by beliefs. Davies defines Vain Observances with an example of how his professor spilled some salt, and then threw a pinch of it over his shoulder to “hit the devil in the eye.” The second form is known as “Divination,” which is based on being guided by a religious group. Davies shows this form through the example of how thousands of people, including one of his professors, refer to the I Ching for good advice. The third form is a common one shown at many university exams, when lucky items are placed on the student’s desks. This form is known as “Idolatry.” “Improper Worship of the True God” is the fourth form, which Davies displays through an engineering student and how he placed a two-dollar bill everyday on the altar of the college chapel, to bribe god to help him with girl issues
The term superstition is thought to derive from the Latin superstitio, meaning "to stand over in awe." Many believe that superstitious beliefs originated during the earliest days of humanity. Faced with natural phenomena like thunderstorms and earthquakes, as well as the unpredictability of illness and food supply, human beings attempted to create an understandable world of powers that could be influenced by action. The earliest superstitions were created as a way to deal...


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