Superstitions

Today is Friday the 13th. A day that many associate with bad luck, for being  both a Friday and for the ever unlucky number 13. The day has had a history of bad ocurrences, from many culturs. It’s a day for superstitions, like being afraid to walk under a ladder, or to cross paths with a black cat. I myself have never given much thought to Friday the 13th and certainly have never felt any fear or ominous moods towards it. But I am intrigued by the nature of superstitions. These are fears that are not based on rational thought or knowledge. They are fears based on perceived ominous meanings and dark significance.

Although part of me looks at superstitions as irrational fears, I can’t help but see some beauty in them. They seem like intriguing carry-overs from bygone times when people did not understand the world they lived in or why things happened. To see seemingly bad things repeatedly occur on Fridays, especially Friday the 13th, it is no wonder people began to take notice—and caution.

I myself do believe that everything happens for a reason—that coincidences are not always coincidences, and that life sometimes gives us signs. So who am I to say that strange occurrences that tend to follow patterns, or land on specific days, does not hold some significant meaning?

Do superstitions have any place in our lives today? Perhaps, though not as anything more than fun reminders of the days of yore. As a way to bring a bit of magic into one’s life. But I do not think they should inspire fear. That being said, indulging in positive superstitions, ones that bring good luck, could be good for the soul as well as a way to bring one a little more confidence–not because they are proven to work, but because we believe in them, and belief is powerful. As for Friday the 13th, I don’t allow it to keep me home or nervous. In fact, I used to consider 13 my “lucky” number. As I’ve written before, challenging our fears is a way to overcome them—but that doesn’t mean I purposefully walk under ladders or break mirrors.

Here are a few superstitions that I can think of now:

  • Crossing paths with a black cat, bad luck.
  • Throwing salt over your shoulder to ward off evil and bring good luck.
  • Breaking a mirror—seven years bad luck.
  • Bird in the house—someone will die.
  • Stepping on cracks, break your mother’s back.
  • Opening umbrellas in the house, bad luck.
  • In Italy, if you see a ladybug fly into your room, its good luck.

What superstitions could you add to the list? Are there any that you legitimately fear? Any I should take more seriously? Leave a comment and share!

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