Magical thinking

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Magical thinking is a kind of thinking that looks for relationships between actions and events that can not be proved by reason and observation. Examples of magical thinking include some forms of prayer, some religious or magical rituals, superstitions, and taboos. The rain dance is a form of magical thinking. The dancers believe that the actions and songs used in the rain dance will cause rain to fall. Faith healing is a form of magical thinking where the healer says prayers, puts their hands on the sick person in the belief that the healer's actions will cure the person. Explanations for magical thinking include coincidence, the placebo effect, self-deception, staged events, and natural causes. See materialism.

In psychology, magical thinking may lead people to believe that their thoughts by themselves can cause effects in the world or that thinking something is the same as doing it. It is a type of incorrect reasoning that looks for meaningful relationships between coincidences.

However many people believe supernatural things do happen sometimes. To believe all explainable events are simply due to magical thinking is a form of scepticism.