Michael Shermer: The pattern behind self-deception

As an expert on debunking myths and urban legends, Michael Shermer understands the intricate psychology behind why people put their faith in everything from UFOs to dowsing rods to 2012 doomsday “prophecies.” He posits that humanity’s ingrained need to believe in something and uncanny ability to recognize patterns (even ones that don’t necessarily exist) leads it to engage in such amazing displays of self-deception. Quite a few studies from many different sources support this insightful claim.

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