4. Using nationalism to get support for pseudoscience by portraying pseudoscience and superstition as Indian ancient wisdom deliberately discredited by the West: There is a new trend of framing the pseudoscience in the west vs east binary by the pseudo-science propagators. To begin with, they claim that their claim is scientific, then they say that it was already known to ancient Indians which was only recently discovered by the West. Finally, they argue that the West says the same thing as ancient Indian wisdom does but terms ancient Indian wisdom as superstition while calling the western discovery as the science.
This line of argument plays with the general sentiment of Indians of a feeling of being neglected and suppressed by the west. Psychologically, believing such pseudo-scientific claims immediately becomes an act of rebellion, reclaiming India from the clutches of the West. Thus, it also taps into the basal nationalist feelings, which is on rising in recent years. Even the well-educated fall into this trap when pseudoscience is given a nationalist tinge.
Of course, the problems with this are obvious. Their claim is not scientific, to begin with. It's just a clever arrangement of scientific vocabulary. Besides, it suffers a common logical error of - two things sound the same hence they should be the same. For instance, quantum physics sounds weird and consciousness sounds weird and hence consciousness and quantum physics must be one and the same. Similarly, the metaphysical claim and scientific claim sound similar and hence they must be the same.
5. Laws that do not promote free speech especially criticism against religion: Promoting scientific temper clashes with religion (at least what is perceived to be part of religion) at some point. Given the trend of associating every superstition with religion, any criticism of superstition is a criticism of religion. It thus falls under the purview of "hurting religious sentiments" giving scope for zealous administrators and governments to harass the messengers of scientific temper.
6. Reducing scientific fact to an opinion: In the famous TV series F.R.I.E.N.D.S, a character named Phoebe argues regarding evolution: Evolution is your opinion, why can't I have my opinion, that's different from evolution, an opinion of creation.
The sinister thing about such arguments is that it reduces a scientific fact, which has evidence and there's no question of disagreement, to an opinion where it is reasonable to have an "opinion" contradictory to the evidence.
Once you reduce something to an opinion, the debate then becomes your opinion vs. my opinion. It then follows that we must agree to disagree while respecting other's opinion. Thus, the argument ends in a deadlock/stalemate. Phrasing pseudoscience in such manner makes it resistant to any further probing.
This tactic was earlier used limitedly in the case of the question of the existence of God, but it has grown enormously during recent times. Even the flat-earthers and sun sign horoscope believers are using this tactic. Apparently, one must respect the "opinion" of flat-earthers and sun sign horoscope believers.
For one, it is not a subjective thing where one can have an opinion. It is a scientific fact that the earth is flat and sun sign horoscope is absolute nonsense. And, one need not respect these opinions. One should just recognize the freedom to hold such opinions but others are under no obligation to respect these "opinions". They deserve all the ridicule they get.
7. Government support to pseudoscience: The phrasing of pseudoscience and superstitions as matters of religion, a cultural identity that is a matter of national pride makes it ripe ground for politicians to gain support by rallying people along these lines. The free speech-restricting laws become readily available tools for the government to suppress those who criticize the pseudoscience and superstitions. It makes the job of reformists extra difficult.
While the seven challenges above were about the nature of the content of superstitions, pseudoscience, and their justifications, the next two challenges are regarding the community of people who are supposed to promote scientific temper.
10. Lack of initiative from scientists and science communicators to take the pseudoscience propagators head-on: One of the reasons for treating science communication as the spread of knowledge but not the spread of scientific method is due to the lack of initiative from the scientists and science communicators to take the pseudoscience and superstition propagators head-on.
It could be due to many reasons. As late Prof. Majul Bhargava said, many scientists in India are themselves are believers of such pseudoscience and superstitions. Part of the reason is because of the phrasing of pseudoscience and superstitions as matters of religion and cultural identity. It's easy for those who grew up in this ecosystem to subscribe to these beliefs.
Some people of this community believe that holding such pseudoscience beliefs like astrology does not cause much harm. The other reason could be that either they are busy or they are not well versed with the new age media. The fact that the government supports such pseudoscience coupled with free restriction laws in India, and the violence against the reformers could also be one of the reasons.
In any case, scientists and science communicators should take these issues and pseudoscience propagating people head-on. If not, it will come to bite them back one day. It is difficult to get support for scientific endeavours from a society that does not value science. It is in their best interests to take initiative and take part in the social reform process too.