Journal article

Loss of Control Increases Belief in Precognition and Belief in Precognition Increases Control

Katharine H Greenaway, Winnifred R Louis, Matthew J Hornsey

PLoS One | PUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE | Published : 2013

Abstract

Every year thousands of dollars are spent on psychics who claim to "know" the future. The present research questions why, despite no evidence that humans are able to psychically predict the future, do people persist in holding irrational beliefs about precognition? We argue that believing the future is predictable increases one's own perceived ability to exert control over future events. As a result, belief in precognition should be particularly strong when people most desire control-that is, when they lack it. In Experiment 1 (N = 87), people who were experimentally induced to feel low in control reported greater belief in precognition than people who felt high in control. Experiment 2 (N =..

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