Apophenia (also known as patternicity) describes a situation in which patterns or connections between random or unrelated ideas or objects are perceived by an individual and seem to be significant. The term was first coined by Klaus Conrad and was used to describe the delusional thinking in psychosis and schizophrenia. Although this is a common symptom in delusional disorders it is now acknowledged that pattern detection is an universal human feature and we all experience apophenia to some degree. The tendency for humans to see faces in inanimate objects is well-known; we see faces in clouds, objects, food, and the moon. Another common example is thinking that random and unrelated patterns of behavior are 'lucky' which is common in sports (as in superstitions and training methods) and gambling.

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