Just imagine a supermoon's effects on the body. Really. Just imagine. (Robert Durell / Los Angeles…)
If a full moon affects the human body, then a supermoon surely would send those effects into overdrive, leading to even more pregnancies, epileptic seizures, surgery screw-ups, suicides, assaults and various other types of biological havoc. Surely, it would.
The operative word, of course, is "if." And the Skeptic's Dictionary begins a nice distillation of moon-related folklore this way:
"The full moon has been linked to crime, suicide, mental illness, disasters, accidents, birthrates, fertility, and werewolves, among other things. Some people even buy and sell stocks according to phases of the moon, a method probably as successful as many others. Numerous studies have tried to find lunar effects. So far, the studies have failed to establish much of interest."
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The essay then offers highlights from research on the many purported links between the moon's phases and human behavior. Such a distillation is worth reading as we head into the much-heralded "supermoon" weekend.
This story from LiveScience takes a similar tack with similar results. Writer Robert Roy Britt notes:
"When strange things happen at full moon, people notice the "coincidental" big bright orb in the sky and wonder. When strange things happen during the rest of the month, well, they're just considered strange, and people don't tie them to celestial events."
Britt, however, does not debunk the werewolf connection. That must mean it's true.