We must have at least a few times encounter unexplainable and strange happenings. We don’t know how to logically put it, so mysticism seems like the easiest explanation. Science is growing, but never enough to explain everything, right?
Our ancestors have created lots of myths and superstitions to explain happenings they encounter and to enforce customary laws upon their society. Those myths and superstitions have been passed down for generations and they still live amongst us today. Many of us still believe in them, even if it’s just for the sake of “just in case it’s true” without actually believing in it.
There is no logical or scientific explanation to some of the myths and superstitions that still live today. But in a sense, they are part of cultural heritage, remembering that ‘culture’ includes immaterial things like morality, values and, well, myths and superstitions. In fact, people today create new myths and superstitions.
Myths refer to a certain story meant to explain history or natural or social phenomenon that usually involve supernaturality. People cannot be sure whether the myths they hear are true stories or not, even with the so-called ‘proofs’ such as strangely shaped rock or landscape. But many still believe myths anyway because it’s easier to accept an explanation than leaving our conscience not knowing. We basically don’t like not knowing stuff.
Superstitions, on the other hand, is excessively believing in supernatural beings or events. Sometimes there are myths behind superstitions and sometimes there isn’t. Myths and superstitions are similar, but myths tend to be understood, while superstitions are believed.
Psychologists investigated that engaging in superstitious behaviours gives a sense of control and somewhat reduces anxiety; the anxiety of not knowing. Also, superstitions are used to claim safety. For example, we’ve heard stories of no matter how daring village criminals could be, they would avoid robbing or violating certain places.
So, in the place of the modern world where science is starting to ‘explain’ the truth behind myths and superstitions, how should we act upon them? Should we ignore them when they are proven untrue?
Respect. We should simply respect them.
If we can’t they are true, we can’t say they are not true either. Don’t get too caught up believing in superstitions and myth that it pressures you and gets you fearful every time. But, you shouldn’t ignore them altogether, especially you should avoid breaking them when you acknowledge their existence. Say, you’re visiting a rural village or forest areas, then you should prefer to stick around with the local rules no matter how silly it may sound to you.