Anyone who’s been to the West Coast or visited hippie towns like Burlington, VT or Asheville, NC has undoubtedly heard some version of the New Age spiel. It generally involves “energy work,” “intuition,” and somewhere along the way, “quantum” something gets dropped into the mix—as in “quantum healing,” “quantum intention,” or “quantum intuitive energy work.” What does that even mean? And who buys this stuff? A recent study led by Gordon Pennycook seeks to answer the latter question, regardless of whether New Age clichés mean anything at all. According to the authors, the propensity to interpret garbled phrases as profound is a sign of “Bullshit Receptivity,” and it’s correlated with low intelligence and high gullibility.
Read the rest at Science on Religion