Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Breaking the Reflection

Back in the kiddy day's one of the biggest insult you could use was that the mirror broke because you are so ugly! But what happens if you accidentally break a mirror? many people say you will then have seven years of bad luck.

Centuries ago, people believed that a person's image in a mirror was actually a reflection of the person's soul, much like the way Native Americans felt that a photograph stole part of their soul and that's why they resisted being photographed. Further, this is why vampires can't see themselves in the mirror, because they have no soul. Anyway, believing that their soul was in the mirror, breaking a mirror meant that a part of the soul would not be able to reunite with the body. Obviously, without a portion of the soul, a person would be in for some bad luck. Many people agreed that the average amount of years for bad luck is seven. This is also how long it takes the body to rejuvenate itself. This comes from the Romans. They believed that a person's health and fortune changed every seven years.

  Along with many centuries of stories about mirrors, it is easy to see how mirrors came to be mysterious yet helpful tools in the ancient and new societies of today!

Here's an ancient story about a youthful mirror: 

Good Luck Rabbit

             Some say that the left hind foot of a rabbit is lucky! But where did this belief come from? I first heard of this form of luck on a television show called supernatural, this form of luck appears in other television shows as well such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer and other “supernatural” shows. Some believe this form of luck to originate from
African-American folk magic, hoodoo. The left hind foot of a rabbit is useful as a charm. Not any left hind foot of a rabbit will do; the rabbit must have been shot or captured in a cemetery. the phase of the moon is also important. Some say that the rabbit must be taken in the full moon, while others hold instead that the rabbit must be taken in the new moon. Some say instead that the rabbit must be taken on a Friday, or a rainy Friday, or Friday the 13th. Some sources say that the rabbit should be shot with a silver bullet, while others say that the foot must be cut off while the rabbit is still alive. So just to make sure you get the luck if a rabbits hind left foot you must; Shoot it with a silver bullet, but only enough to wound it so it is still alive and then cut its left hind foot off. While doing all of this on a full moon, on a rainy Friday the 13th. And if that doesn’t work then you have to do everything again but on a new moon! So who is ready to get a rabbit’s foot charm? I should probably check the moons position on the next Friday the 13th and what the weather will be like!
These are the "rabbit feet" you can get now
at the store for 50 cents so you do not have
to go through all the trouble of
getting one yourself!

Here's a link to a website that talks about the findings of a 53 million year old rabbits foot, and what the ancient uses might have been, so check it out:

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Bad Luck Will Rain on You

Today has been a dreary rainy day and it has sparked one of the many superstitions, umbrellas!!
Open an umbrella inside and bad luck will "rain" on you.
Why do so many people believe this? Maybe it's something parents tell there children so they do not play with umbrella inside and break or poke their eyes out! or maybe it is one of these two ancient ideas:

The most common stems from the days when umbrellas were used mainly as protection against the sun. To open one indoors would be to insult the sun god and invite his wrath on everyone in your household.
Another theory borrows from the idea of an umbrella as a protector against the storms of life. If you were to open one in your home, the household guardian spirits might think you felt their protection was insufficient, and then they'd leave in a huff. Then everyone in the house is cursed.

But what i think happened is that somebody somewhere left their umbrella open to dry out, left the house with his umbrella still open and then had some horrific event happen to him. He made a connection to the umbrella and the bad luck and the word spread that the superstition was actually true! Regardless every time I hold that umbrella in my hands I can't help but to think in the back of my head to "not open this up inside or I will get bad luck!" I surely can't be the only one!

Check out some more information on the umbrella superstition: 

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Seven Years to Pass

                     The other Night my four year old sister was chomping away on gum when she accidentally swallowed it. right then and there her older sister who is seven exclaimed "oh no! It's going to stay in your tummy for seven years!" she then had a look of mortification until I told her that the gum will not stay in your stomach for seven years and will come out right on schedule, which seemed to ease her distress. It’s hard to find anyone who hasn’t heard of the suspicious claim about gum staying in your stomach for seven years, usually told when you were a child, but where dose this tall tale come from? My guess is years of parents shaking their fingers at their children trying to teach them not to eat non-food items. Then friends tell friends on the playground and then it spreads like wildfire! But why does the tale of chewing gum staying in our stomachs for seven years stick with us throughout our childhood and into our adulthoods where we then give misleading information to our children? I believe this has to do with the little bit of scare factor, just the thought of something gooey and sticky consuming your stomach for seven years! Is just enough fear for any kid to want to keep that gum up and to remember that rule for the rest of their lives! Then growing up realizing that this bogus tale actually prevented them from swallowing gum and pass the lie down to their children. This could be the reason for so many gum wads stuck to desks, tables, chairs, and most annoying the bottom of my shoe!!!!!

Here's a link to the Mayo clinic on gum: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/digestive-system/an00896

Friday the Thirteenth

It's the most widespread superstion in the United States today. Some people refuse to go to work on Friday the 13th; some won't eat in restaurants; many wouldn't think of setting a wedding on the date. Millions of Americans have paraskevidekatriaphobia, the fear of Friday the 13th, these people experience a very old superstition. Exactly how old is difficult to say, because determining the origins of superstitions is mostly guesswork. Some believe the origins come from the Scandinavian who thought that the number thirteen was unlucky because the mythological twelve demigods were once joined by a thirteenth, who was evil and brought pain, and misfortune to humans. There are also Christian related roots to the Friday the thirteenth as Jesus was crucified on a Friday and the number of people at the Last Supper was thirteen! And of course, the thirteenth guest was Judas, who was nothing more than a traitor. But are all of these explanations just answers that were seeked out for explaining peoples bad luck on the dreaded day? Hollywood seems to be benefiting from people’s fear of Friday the 13th since there has been countless movies about Friday the thirteenth. Starting in 1980 with the title Friday The 13th then the next year Friday The 13th Part Two then the year after that Friday The 13th Part III then finally Friday The 13th: The Final Chapter in 1984 if only it would have been the final chapter, yet Hollywood keeps throwing out the same old ideas in the same old fashion even with the same old name! The year after Friday the 13th the “final Chapter” Friday The 13th: A New Beginning was released in 1985. Then Jason Lives: Friday The 13th Part VI -1986 Friday The 13th Part VII: The New Blood -1988 Friday The 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan – 1989 Jason Goes To Hell: The Final Friday (yea, right!) – 1993 Jason X – 2001 Freddy vs. Jason -2003 Then Finally Friday The 13th (didn’t they already use this title?) -2009. I am personally just waiting for the sequels!
A 1993 study published in the British Medical Journal provocatively titled "Is Friday the 13th Bad for Your Health?" With the aim of mapping "the relation between health, behavior, and superstition surrounding Friday 13th in the United Kingdom, its authors compared the ratio of traffic volume to the number of automobile accidents on two different days, Friday the 6th and Friday the 13th, over a period of years. Incredibly, they found that in the region sampled, while consistently fewer people chose to drive their cars on Friday the 13th, the number of hospital admissions due to vehicular accidents was significantly higher than on "normal" Fridays. Their conclusion:
"Friday 13th is unlucky for some. The risk of hospital admission as a result of a transport accident may be increased by as much as 52 percent. Staying at home is recommended."

Do people really experience bad luck on Friday the 13th or do they just contribute every little thing that goes wrong to the date whereas on a different date they wouldn’t pay much attention to the small misfortune?

Here's a link to abc's bit on how Friday the 13th got so scary: http://abcnews.go.com/Health/MindMoodResourceCenter/friday-13th-origins-phobia/story?id=11395381#.T70tzNym-8A