Superstitions have often been passed down generations. While the origins of most superstitions are untraceable, they still exist across cultures. These superstitions usually go beyond logic, giving people a sense of control over uncertainty. Here are 15 superstitions that people still believe in.
1. Friday The 13th
This folklore is associated with the Last Supper, a day before the crucifixion of Jesus Christ on Friday. He had dined with his 12 disciplines that night, leading to the belief that the number 13 and Friday are bad omens. Several historical events, such as the Bangladesh cyclone and the German bombing of Buckingham Palace, also occurred on Friday the 13th.
Contrary to what people believe, the music sensation Taylor Swift considers 13 as her lucky number, as she said in an interview. She was born on the 13th, her first album went gold in 13 weeks, and her first number-one song had a 13-second intro.
2. Gifting An Empty Wallet
According to this superstition, an empty wallet while gifting can transfer the giver’s financial fortune and money energy to the receiver. People believe that putting a penny in the wallet can prevent financial mishaps.
3. Touchwood/Knocking On Wood
Knocking on wood wards off a jinx or bad luck and brings prosperity. This superstition originated from ancient communities that worshipped trees to invite protective spirits.
It could also be traced to the British game ‘tiggy-touch-wood’ in which children immune themselves from being captured by another player by touching wood.
4. Gifting A Sharp Object
Many cultures consider that gifting a sharp object such as a knife or scissors to a loved one can be disastrous for a relationship.
However, people have found a way around this superstition. The receiver gives the giver a coin so that the sharp object’s gifting becomes transactional.
5. Breaking A Mirror
This superstition stems from the belief that a mirror reflects one’s soul and that breaking it spells ill fortune for seven years. This is probably why people cover mirrors before bedtime or throw away broken pieces without looking into them.
However, it has its roots in psychology, too. According to a psychological theory, a broken mirror syndrome is associated with negative self-introspection. The number of broken mirror pieces may correspond to a person’s psychological traumas.
6. Counting Magpies
‘One for sorrow, Two for joy, Three for a girl, Four for a boy, Five for silver, Six for gold, Seven for secrets to never be told.’ Who hasn’t sung this rhyme and tried to predict the future?
Spotting one magpie is also believed to be a sign of bad luck. So, people try to counter it by saying, ‘Good morning, Mr Magpie, how is your lady wife today?’
Another superstition is that a magpie represents the devil and witchcraft.
7. Beginner’s Luck
Have you ever played a game once or twice only to win and hear people call it ‘beginner’s luck’? Usually, experts grumble this phrase when newbies defeat them at card, board, or sports games.
8. Birthday Candles And A Wish
A survey found that 28% of Americans believe in making a wish while blowing out birthday candles. However, one has to do this in one breath to make the wish come true. Of course, one doesn’t have to tell anyone or the wish won’t come true.
9. Crossing The Fingers
‘Fingers crossed’ is one of the most common expressions people use when they want something good to happen or want to seek divine protection. People cross their index fingers over their middle fingers, close their eyes, and pray to the universe.
There is another gripping tale, too. If one puts crossed fingers behind their back while telling a lie, they ask for God’s forgiveness.
10. Black Cat Crossing The Path
Many people consider a black cat synonymous with sorcery and bad luck. The famous rapper Missy Elliott admitted in an interview that she would turn around and go the other way if she saw a black cat down her street.
However, some feline owners celebrate National Black Cat Day with pride to create awareness about the low adoption rate of this creature.
11. Not Walking Under The Ladder
When a ladder leans against a wall, it forms a holy triangle that Egyptians and Christians consider a representation of the trinity of the Gods. Walking under the ladder may bring the wrath of God in the form of misfortune, betrayal, or death.
Well, superstition or not, avoiding walking under the ladder is advisable to prevent any injuries to self or others.
12. Four-Leaf Clover
Four-leaf clovers are rare; perhaps that’s why they are perceived as good luck and protection charm. Many people believe that this herb can cure illnesses. One mythological tale says Adam and Eve plucked a four-leaf clover as a souvenir when they left the Garden of Eve.
In the Bible’s apocalyptic Book of Revelation, John the Apostle refers to 666 as the number of the beast. So, people associate 666 with evil and danger. One would be pleasantly surprised to know that the number 666 has a spiritual meaning in numerology. It is considered an angel number, representing life balance, harmony, and nurturing.
14. No Umbrellas Inside
A fable says opening an umbrella inside the room was perceived as an insult to the Sun God. It is a harbinger of bad luck.
Superstition is what it is. However, one should not open the umbrellas inside the room so that it doesn’t poke anyone or break any object.
15. Evil Eye Charm
Evil eye charm as a fashion accessory is a massive rage today. Fascinatingly, people across different cultures have been wearing evil jewelry for centuries. It dispels negative energy from a person’s aura. It also protects one against illnesses.