Religion Past and Present

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(380 words)

[German Version]

The pseudo-sciences or parasciences (“alternative sciences”) generally include such phenomena as alchemy, acupuncture, anthroposophy, astrology, esotericism, geomancy, homeopathy, occultism, and parapsychology, and sometimes also psychoanalysis, radiesthesia, etc. insofar as their claim to be sciences is rejected by science on theoretical and methodological grounds. Both terms derive from Greek (ψεῦδος/pseúdos, “deception, lie”; παρά/pará, “beside”) and imply criticism. In the pseudo-sciences, the alleged phenomena, theories, etc…

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Zinser, Hartmut, “Pseudo-Science/Para-Science”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 17 July 2024 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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