Top 10 Crazy Ideas from the Past

These crazy ideas from the past show us that, no matter how intelligent we consider ourselves at some point in history, when we draw a line we understand that prejudices and ignorance will guide a community even towards its destruction. In a few centuries, upcoming generations will look back at today’s’ non-flying vehicles and finger-operated online gadgets (while navigating through the futuristic iPads with their minds) and have a good laugh. But, if we will be mocked later on, we might as well too look at some of the most commonly accepted concepts of previous times and be grateful that people have moved on.

10. Cigarette Smoking is Healthy for our Throat

Crazy Ideas from the Past

This idea seems almost incredible, given that regular smoking has been associated a variety mouth and throat-related tumors but there was a period when smoking was regarded not only harmless but actually healthy. Hence the advertisement that until lately was still noticeable on a wall in London “Smoke for your throat’s health”. The promoters were a company who has designed a unique cork filter to take care of your throat during smoking. Other advertisement said “So cool-so sleek to your throat” while one presented in the gazettes ran “My throat is good with cigarettes”. Unnecessary to say these kinds of ads probably would not be accepted now, no matter how lovely and shiny its package looks.

9. The Earth is Actually the Center of the Universe


As the future humans discuss at a galacto-coffee with some friendly aliens, they will make fun of those of us in the third millennium who do not believe in life on the other planets. Who believed that the Earth was placed right in the middle of the galaxy? At least we do not think that the Earth is in the center of the universe, as the historical populations did.

According to some of the most significant philosophers of ancient times, all the celestial bodies, including the stars, that we can observe during the night, are all moving around the Earth, juts like the sun is doing during daytime. This concept was usually accepted until the 1500s, when it was first stated that maybe we are the ones going around the sun, and as it is for all those other planets.

8. Spoiled Kids Become Socialist Adults


For decades, moms and dads were worried about “spoiling” their children. Too much interest would create desperate kids, too many hugs would them clingy…the child must be separated as early and as much as possible to avoid those types of issues. But some child experts took this strategy even further and offered US parents a full-proof purpose not to mess up their babies in his the 60’s guides about bringing up children: If you spoil your kid, it will turn into a socialist adult.

In their terms, if the parents educate their children to expect everything to be offered on their requirement, the increases the chances of planting the seeds of evil socialism. During the time of the Cold War, it was a concerning probability indeed and moms and dads took the tip immediately. Quit hugging that kid! It is unpatriotic!

7. Our Planet is Hollow


Ideas about the Earth have maintained scientists active for hundreds of years. And the concept that our world is empty is one that has continued, with some individuals even saying it nowadays. It has been one of the reasons for science-fiction books and there are supposed to be all kinds of stuff in there.

If all these seem absurd, then take a look at the ideas of Scientologists and you will understand that strange values are fairly extended. The Hollow Planet stuff may be chronic but it has not been usually accepted since the 18th century, when information about the planet’s development proved this concept to be completely wrong.

6. The Children can Acquire Characteristics from their Mothers’ Previous Partners


This idea – named telegony – is so unreasonable that it contradicts people’s perception. The concept is that if your mom had previous partners, you might inherit their genetic traits rather than from your dad. No one really describes that phenomenon, but it was avidly implemented by racists everywhere. Content from various magazines say those individuals used terms like “polluting their chromosome chain”, and this is the type of pseudo-science talk you would expect from unaware racists.

One of the illustrations often mentioned when it we talk about telegony is the famous “Lord Morton’s Mare” – a horse from the 19 the century that was born from two white-colored horses and who appeared with stripy legs. Its legs were linked to the mare’s anterior reproduction with a quagga, an extinct species of zebra. This is not a particularly powerful part of “evidence” and it was later described by the concept of recessive genetics. Looks like this telegony had very little foundation even back then!

5. Thalidomide is Recommended for Pregnant Women


More suspicious healthcare guidance here, which led to a worldwide disaster. In the 1950s, a new wonder medication known as Thalidomide was released onto the drug industry. Originally designed to deal with insomnia and complications, it easily became obvious that it was also working for treating morning sickness. So, physicians began recommending it commonly to pregnant women, without knowing that it would cause horrible problems in their unborn kids.

The impact was awful – a large number of kids passed away and countless more were born without their limbs. Gradually, it was tracked back to Thalidomide and this medication was removed. It still continues to be available fro the customers, for very particular healthcare uses, but there is an obvious caution about using it for pregnant women. What is scary about this situation is how gladly everyone approved his or her doctor’s guidance without asking. The only beneficial aspect to the whole event is that control has consequently become much stronger, especially when recommending for maternity.

4. You can Intoxicate Your Child With “Angry Breast Milk”

breast milk

On the topic of kids, there have been some exciting ideas put out about the historical and bewildering art of nursing. A typical one around the beginning of the last hundred of years was that if a mom were upset, it would make her breast milk bitter. Fortunately, that is not the real situation, given how many moms are also having persistent 2-year-olds that can make anyone angry.

It is real that excessive pressure can have a negative effect on a mother’s breast milk, but these days, no one focuses on guides like the 100-year-old books for the parents which said that intestinal colic was due to mothers being upset. As one govt web page states clearly “Negative feelings cannot modify the breast milk”.

3. The Best Way of Relaxing a Child is Morphine


Another great example of some old-fashioned family caring, with the use of a “relaxing syrup” for all the worrying child diseases. Now, any mom or father can tell you that soothing is a lengthy and agonizing procedure for all engaged into it and, no question about it, many would try adding to their child’s medication a tad of morphine.

In the 1800s, however, ideas were different and the relaxing syrup created by some companies did actually have 5 mg of morphine. The advertisements were real when they were telling that it can “relieve the inadequate behavior immediately” but these were not quite so real when they stated that it was “completely harmless”. This syrup was from the United States, but there were many English counterparts that included identical components. No wonder London had back then an issue with opiate patients – they were raised on the stuff!

2. Leeches can Treat Everything


Another concept that has some contemporary followers, leeches were once considered good for getting rid of all your problems. The idea is said to have began more than 2,500 years ago in Asia as a method of bloodletting and the Ancient Greeks were eager users of this strategy, thinking that the “four humors” of our body (phlegm, blood, dark and yellow bile) were required to be in perfect stability to make sure we have a great health. If these elements were not balanced, the person became ill. Letting blood represented a stability method and leeches are excellent at blood sucking. It is more than likely that the whole concept absolutely scares you but if it does not, you can still see leech practitioners these days.

1. The World is Flat


The Flat World Community still thinks what everyone considered pre-Columbus – that our planet is a flat disk, with the Northern Pole in the center and Antarctica going around its side. Obviously, this is taken from actual translations of the Holy Bible.

The only issue with taking the Holy Bible paragraphs ad literam is that it was written by individuals who had access just to the knowledge of their time, and images from outer space have proven us quite clearly that the planet is indeed round. Still, the Flat World Community may consider this as all part of a major conspiracy.

Images sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10

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