To me it makes no sense at all to associate fear with superstition. There are so many ways to look at superstitions, so many ways to define them and different choices to make with regard to them. It can be found in certain dictionaries broken down to Super meaning "above" and stition which is allegedly the Latin for "to stand", I've seen varied spellings of "stition." In that breakdown we get “stand above” or “stand over.” I have not found a Latin dictionary that has that word however and how that came to be associated with other current definitions is beyond me since many current definitions mention irrational fear and ignorance. Even if it did mean to stand over, it is generally not the ignorant mind that would "stand over" something. It could suggest living an examined life, standing over things, contemplating them putting thought before action. Still, if you peruse various dictionaries and the definitions of the word superstition you will see words like irrational, ignorant and unreasonable, why? I suppose it's like anything else, a choice.
In a nutshell I guess it's clear that I think superstition, despite the random oddness and variance of definitions, can be productive as a motivating factor should one make that choice. I suppose that's because I have my own definition for it and the words irrational, ignorant and unreasonable are not any part of the way I define the mystery and fun. Science has attempted to figure out whether or not there is any legitimacy to superstition, more than likely to figure out a way to market the pill that would go along with the diagnonsense. B.F. Skinner was able to trigger what could only be described as a superstitious response in pigeons with one of his experiments. Of course pigeons are sneaky little buggers. At any rate, I’ll continue to throw salt over my left shoulder and keep my cupboard doors closed.
"Ritual is to the internal sciences what experiment is to the external sciences."