Superstitions are beliefs that contradict modern science. They are practices and customs that people follow. Some are vague, silly but some do make you wonder. Superstitions go back to earlier times where our ancestors after learning/ observing things around them advised a few things which are so ingrained in us that we believe that they symbolize good luck or bad luck. It is important to understand the history behind it so we take a look at 10 such superstitions around the world including India and study whether it’s plain silly or do they actually have meaning or some sense behind them?!
A black cat crossing your way
A black cat crossing your way is considered bad luck all around the world. Our ancestors believed that witches kept black cats as companions or that, these black cats turned into witches after 7 years. Now, a lot of people in India throw a stone towards the way in order to reverse bad luck. Anybody who believes in science or logical thinking will not succumb to this superstition because it is so silly. On a lighter note, a joke prevails that powerful people like Adolf Hitler and Napoleon Bonaparte who went to wars fear nothing but black cats!
Cutting nails after sunset
Cutting nails after dark is considered bad but we need to know why is it so? People suggest that when electricity did not prevail, they would not cut their nails after sunset and it has a lot of logical and religious reasons behind it. First being, people did not have nail cutters back then and used knives to trim their nails, and doing it in the dark means risk of injuring yourself. Another reason behind it would be that Goddess Lakshmi visits during the night and acts like cutting your nails, hair and paying loans or giving away money mark disrespect of the goddess.
Crows cawing and guests arriving
It is believed that crows cawing indicates that guests are arriving, especially in India. On the other hand, in western countries seeing a crow in dream means that something bad will happen to you. It indicates grief and misfortune.
Drinking milk after eating fish
Drinking milk after eating fish can cause skin diseases is what a lot of people hear and believe. It can be termed as a silly superstition but it does have scientific and Ayurvedic explanations backing it up. It is advised not to drink milk after eating fish because if you are allergic to either of these or if you are lactose intolerant, then it may be harmful to you. Ayurveda suggests that milk has a cooling effect and fish has a heating effect and a lot of nutritionists also support this but in a nutshell, you will not have any fatal harm consuming milk and fish together.
Seeing a mongoose symbolizes luck
Another common superstition that seeing a mongoose means something good will happen to you. But, I can tell you why people believe so. It is because mongoose and snakes are arch enemies and mongoose kill snakes and make the area snake free hence protecting you from snakes so maybe that is why mongoose symbolize luck.
Itchy palms mean that money is coming your way
A lot of cultures believe that an itchy left palm means money is coming your way and an itchy right palm means you’re about to lose money. Some people also believe that scratching your itchy palm on wood will warrant good fortune.
Friday the 13th
Friday the 13th is considered the most unlucky and cursed date in western traditions. It is so unlucky that many hotels omit to label their 13th floor. The origin of this superstition is that Judas Iscariot was the 13th guest at the Last Supper and Jesus Christ was killed on a Friday. Hence, Friday the 13th. This date occurs at least once a year or sometimes three times a year.
Breaking a mirror
Breaking a mirror is considered bad luck and it means a broken mirror can bring 7 years of bad luck in your life. It is believed that mirrors are a reflection of your soul and breaking it can mean harm to the soul. People bury the broken mirror in the moonlight to end the chain of bad luck.
Saying “God bless you” when someone sneezes
It shows etiquette when you say “God bless you” when someone sneezes but it is not just good manners, it has a superstitious meaning to it. It is believed that when you sneeze, your soul leaves your body out into the universe, and saying “God bless you” will bring it back. How lame?
Knocking on wood
Some cultures believed that gods live in trees and lightly knocking on wood bark would help them ask for a favor from God and they would lightly tap on the bark again to say “thank you” when the deed is done.