Monday, May 19, 2014


Jan Verwoertuses the term magic to describe certain sympathetic relationships between people objects and ideas in this demonstration. I think it might give heart attack to the history makers. Critical history of the war on sympathetic magic
Colin Dickey's essay for Lapham's Quarterly, presents a critical take on The Golden Bough, James G. Frazer's 1890 classic text on superstition. Dickey frames contempt for sympathetic magic and its practitioners in the context of the decline of the British empire, and connects it with earlier critiques stretching all the way back to Plato. The essay ends with a section on witchhunting and the persecution of both midwives and promoters of the germ theory of disease, who were accused of practicing their own form of sympathetic magic.
Sceptics Dictionary
Anthropologists consider magical thinking a precursor to scientific thinking. It is indicative of a concern with control over nature through understanding cause and effect. Nevertheless, the methods of magic, however empirical, are not scientific. Such thinking may seem charming when done by our ancestors living thousands of years ago, but today such thinking may indicate a profound ignorance or indifference towards science and a testable understanding of the world. Most of us, from time to time, undoubtedly slip into this primitive mode of thinking, but a bit of reflection should wake us up to the fact that oysters are not an aphrodisiac, having a bit of good luck is not likely to influence our chances of winning the lottery that day, and stabbing a photo of an enemy is not going to hurt her. It may be true that rubbing an amulet given you by your true love makes you feel her presence, but the feeling you have, however magical it may seem, has more to do with biology and psychology than with metaphysics.

No comments:

About Me

My photo
St. Augustine, Florida, United States
I spill ink ,it collects here.