"Superstition is one of the worst diseases of the soul."

— Beattie, James (1735-1803)

Place of Publication
Printed for W. Strahan; and T. Cadell ... and W. Creech
"Superstition is one of the worst diseases of the soul."
Metaphor in Context
It is therefore incumbent on those, who superintend educatino, to instil reight notions into the young mind, and guard it against these, and the like Associations; which, notwithstanding their absurdity, have often embittered human life, and even perverted mens ideas of Divine Providence. Superstition is one of the worst diseases of the soul. It is equally unfriendly to happiness, to [end page 89] rational piety, and to sound philosophy. And this peculiar evil attends those forms of it which I now allude to; that one is not always proof against their influence, even when one is satisfied that they are unreasonable. At the falling of salt, or at finding the number of persons at table to be exactly thirteen, I have known people of good understanding exceedingly disconcerted: who would yet acknowledge, that they believed it was idle to take notice of such a thing; but that, having once looked upon it as ominous, they could not, on seeing it, divest themselves of apprehensions.
(II.iii, pp. 89-90)
At least 2 entries in ESTC (1783).

Beattie, James. Dissertations Moral and Critical. Printed for Strahan, Cadell, and Creech: London, 1783. Facsimile-Reprint: Friedrich Frommann Verlag, Stuttgart-Bad Cannstatt, 1970.
Date of Entry

The Mind is a Metaphor is authored by Brad Pasanek, Assistant Professor of English, University of Virginia.