Luck and superstitions

I was trawling the Internet recently and I came across the phrase It is bad luck to be superstitious.’ What a silly phrase… Click. Click. Scroll. But then somewhere, whirring in the back of my brain, a little voice shouted: “Hey, that’s not actually a bad idea!”

So it is bad luck to be superstitious, true or false?

I think its true. Why? Well if you are not superstitious, everything is down to science and chance, nothing else. Nothing is down to luck everything is calculated and rational.

But doesn’t that take all the fun out of life? Everything can be explained.
“Oh that massive meteor that was going to hit the earth just missed, that was lucky!” – Person A
“Well actually it was down to the Earths gravitational field not being that of the equivalent field cast by the sun, moon and all nearby planets dust rock et cetera, therefore due to the angle that the meteor was descending at and the gravitational forces acting upon the relative mass of the meteor, then there was no possible way it could enter the atmosphere…”
– Person B

How dull was that!

Superstitious Cartoon JokeLuck is so much more fun, it can twist things around, it can make things seem possible or impossible, it can give you hope, and take it away.

If you believe in superstitious things like don’t walk under ladders, then you walk under one, and a bucket of water falls on your head, was that unlucky/misfortune or was it destined to happen?

What actually is the definition of luck? According to Mr Oxford its

“Success or failure apparently brought by chance rather than through one’s own actions”

and according to Mr Cambridge its

“The force that causes things, especially good things, to happen to you by chance and not as a result of your own efforts or abilities”

So its things that happen because of ‘luck’ not of your own making?

Well if you walk under a ladder and something bad happens to you, is that not of your own making? You walked under the ladder, so that isn’t unlucky because of you disobeying a superstitious, but because you walked under the ladder in the first place!

So what have we established? Well if you believe in superstition it is easy to use it as a scapegoat. At the end of the day though, it would seem that most things have a rational explanation which are not necessarily linked to the superstition, or the actions you took to abide by it, or ignore it.

Comments and Questions! Do you believe in luck and are you superstitious? If so or if not why?

Schrödinger’s cat

Schrödinger’s cat is a very famous philosophical thought experiment, devised by Erwin Schrödinger in the 1930’s. It challenges our interpretation of the world, and applies some quantum mechanics to a seemingly obvious situation.

The experiment involves a cat, which is placed in a box, with a flask containing poison and a radioactive source. In the box there is also a Geiger counter  – a device that measures ionizing radiation. If this detects a certain amount of radiation, the flask is shattered, releasing the poison which kills the cat.

Schrodingers cat experiment

The application of quantum mechanics implies that after a while, the cat is both dead and alive. Open the box and the cat is instantly dead, or, instantly alive, depending on what you find. Despite this, until you perceive what is inside the box, the cat is both alive and dead. Complicated I know.

“Surly when the Geiger counter measures the radiation at the set level, the flask will shatter and the poison will kill the cat.” – Don’t call me Shirley, and yes, that would appear so. However, if the radioactive source does not decay at the expected rate (which is possible) then the poison may not reach the cat and kill it, so the cat is still alive.

This is why the cat is both dead and alive, because as soon as you shut the box lid, there could be a massive spike of radiation, and the cat could die instantly, or the radiation may be emitted much slower than anticipated, so the cat survives. That is why the cat is both dead and alive.

Now the whole thing gets much more complicated when you add a camera into the experiment. If you place a camera in the box and watch it as a live stream, then the cat dies, when you see it die on the camera – or is it when you open the box? If you watch the camera with a time delay (say 10 seconds) does the cat die, when you would logically believe that it dies, or does it die 10 seconds after that, when it is perceived to be dead, or when the box is actually opened?

Is the cat alive when the box is shut, both dead and alive when you would logically think that it dies, and dead 10 seconds after, when it is perceived as dead?

There is also the question that “can the cat not perceive itself dying?” This could be true, until actual death, as you cannot perceive your own death, can you? Then again, if you are religious, and believe that “God perceives all” then does the cat not die when you would think that it would die anyway, as God sees the cat die?

Throw in fate and destiny and you have a whole new kettle of fish. If the cat is destined to die at a set time, can the radiation affect that?

Schrödinger cat jokeNo animals were harmed in the writing of this article, I was simply presenting a theory, and I needed a living thing as an example for the experiment. It is purely theoretical!

Fate

What are your thoughts on fate? Below are some details on what fate means, and some philosophical questions relating to it.

What is ‘Fate’

  • destiny: an event (or a course of events) that will inevitably happen in the future
  • destiny: the ultimate agency regarded as predetermining the course of events
  • Fate is the debut album by electronic music artist, Velvet Acid Christ.

Destiny

  • Destiny is basically what is destined to happen, what you will do, where you will do it, how when etc. the general idea is that this cannot be changed/altered
  • One form of destiny is the thought that before we are born, we make choices about our life and how it will be lived

Fate and Destiny what’s the difference?

  • “Our Destiny could be classified as our own personal Star.” – Your goal
  • “So Fate could be classified as our own personal Guardian.” – Helps you reach your goal

Fate

Religion

  • “You can’t believe in “destiny” without adding God or any other supernatural entities into the equation” – Wrong or right?
  • What do you think? Does religion influence views on destiny?

Tweaking

  • Can you change your destiny?
  • You may think that you have free will and you are making your own choices, but are you… really?
  • Can you alter the way you reach your overall destiny?

Science

  • Scientific research is always suggesting more and more that it is less the case of nurture, but more the case of nature, as your DNA is supposed to influence the way you live your life
  • In the future some scientists believe that it will be possible to tell what will happen in someone’s life, just form their DNA
  • What are your opinions on that?

The big question!

Can you change your fate through your actions? Any comments and thoughts are welcome!