Stryke wrote:[I'd] go so far as to say it happens a little in every group.
This is true.
Good students often try hard to please the teacher. And people want to believe in something special... A secret supplement that will make them stronger, a secret technique, a special energy (chi, the force...) which masters develop after years of being off alone contemplating their navels...
At the end of the day, there's a little bit of truth to some of the wacko. I first wanted to believe in chi. After a doctorate in systems physiology and biomedical engineering, I tossed it from my mindset. Then when I learned about core strength and sequential summation of motion, I discovered that "it" was there all along, but totally misunderstood as it hid in plain sight.
The last few decades being a scientist and working with real data in randomized controlled trials has shaped my beliefs a lot. And it hasn't necessarily brought me to being a curmudgeon. Far from it. Some of the greatest discoveries are there waiting to be found. It's those unexpected ones that are the most fun to stumble over.