I started reading a book this morning called The 7 Laws of Magical Thinking by Matthew Hutson and so far it looks like it’ll be interesting. The point of the book is to outline how everyone, no matter if religious or atheist, will have odd beliefs that defy logic. This reminded me of an article that I read last week about a rain bringing ritual in India:
Farmers in Berhampur, India have staged a ‘frog wedding’ in an attempt to bring rain to the region.
After weeks of intense, dry heat, residents decided to carry out the age-old ritual, which is believed to please the rain gods.
A full Hindu wedding ceremony took place at a local temple, as attendees blew trumpets and sang songs.
The frog ‘couple’ were adorned with flowers and tinsel as locals chanted Hindu hymns and farmers put colourful streaks of powder on the female frog’s head.
It seems the custom may have worked, as reports suggest that the current weather in Berhampur is stormy with “100% chance of precipitation”.
Sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? So does the notion that a person’s belongings retain an essence of the person long after they’ve died but people will still revere trinkets and clothing and upright pianos if we think someone important once owned or touched them.
We just seem geared toward making room in their heads for any and all kind of nonsense. I suppose that’s what makes us human. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do all we can to be aware of the absurdities of it, though. The more we know of the reasons why we react like we do, the more we can do to consciously override the worst of it. Assuming people have reached the point where they want to…