Students thoughts on superstition

Knocking on wood may seem like a silly thing to do to prevent bad luck, but in some instances, puzzling measures to avoid unpleasant circumstances are performed by even those who claim to not be superstitious.

Sometimes strange events occur that cannot be explained, and often students blame those occurrences on the supernatural or paranormal. And in many instances, a person who does not even believe in such things can be found participating in some of the rituals.

One instance of this is the common interest many have in their zodiac signs. Often, students find themselves on the internet, checking what their future holds based on what their horoscopes say. Many of those students don’t necessarily believe in what their horoscope tells about what their future holds, but devote some amount of time to checking what has been written for their sign of the zodiac.

“I don’t believe in them,” junior Rance Rumbaugh said. “But it’s cool to see what they have to say about me.”

Some simply find reading horoscopes to be a fun way to cure boredom.

“I read my horoscope when I’m bored,” sophomore Kaylee Brin said. “Some of it is actually really accurate.”

While the similarities found between one’s life and what the stars say can sometimes appear to be very real, some only believe what horoscopes say to a certain point.

“I believe in them to an extent,” sophomore Jacey Schaffer said. “I only read them when I’m in the mood anyway.”

Some students just think horoscopes and astrological signs to be completely bogus and don’t even bother to read them.

Perhaps instead of full-on believing in the supernatural, students participate in rituals such as straying away from the cracks on the sidewalk or being ultra-careful around mirrors to avoid a dreaded seven years of bad luck, just to clear the mind.

Psychological research has been performed at the University of Chicago on superstitious rituals and the mind. Jane Risen, an associate professor of behavioral studies at the University of Chicago, found that one’s beliefs are influenced by physical movements or actions so therefore, taking actions to ward off bad luck is more of a psychological mind-clearing activity rather than a true belief in the supernatural.

According to Risen, Superstitious actions may help relieve something that is weighing on one’s mind, but it is purely psychological and not magical.

“When people do that I think that it’s just for fun,” junior Morgan Matthews said.