Free Essay On Superstitions
Type of paper: Essay
Topic: People, Belief, Pets, Internet, Literature, Superstition, Cat, Wish
Superstition is an irrational fear or belief that has no logical grounds or basis. All over the
world different people do believe in different types of superstitions. Almost all those beliefs have some stories associated with them, if we start looking for the origin of such stories we won’t ever reach at a point where they really happened. They are just passed from generations to generations by word of mouth.
One of the commonest of such beliefs is people’s fear of Friday the 13th. There are so many speculations and stories revolving around this belief. Almost every country has its own theories about the day. But the basic feeling remains the same; it is the fear of the unknown. People avoid doing any auspicious work on this day, business meetings or any other important event is postponed if they by chance happen to be on that particular day, people are under the impression that this day brings misfortune or ill fate (Pegg). In an article of a journal it was said after some initial research done on two dates, Friday 6th and Friday 13th, it was said that fewer cars were observed on the road on 13th than 6th. Although the number of people who were out for shopping was almost equal. But very strangely, even when the number of vehicles on the roads were lesser on the 13th, more number of patients were admitted to the hospital for road accident cases on that day as compared to the 6th. They concluded that it is safer for some people to stay at home on Friday the 13th (Scanlon et. al).
Once believed to be auspicious, the black cat is now considered a bad omen. Earlier in Egypt black cats were a sign of good luck, in fact they were worshipped. But by 17th century, things changed drastically. Now the black cats are believed to be a curse. Even in certain cultures, the black cat is burnt due to the belief that burning a black cat will prevent the household from fire and other inauspicious things (Csicop.org). Till date in certain parts of the world the black cats are taken as a positive sign. In a study conducted by Blum and Blum with 130 people, they showed that almost 29% of the individuals were partially influenced by their belief in the black cats superstitions, and around 9% were strongly influenced by the same. However the rest had no influence, still the numbers of people being affected is quite high (BLUM and BLUM).
Another popular superstition is wishing upon the stars. People say that at times god is peeping through the sky, while doing so he shakes the sky and thus a star shoots. If someone makes a wish at that moment, his wish will come true. Although this has got no reality grounds, but at least it gives people a sense of peace and happiness. This belief originally started from Europe, where they made such speculations regarding God peeping down on Earth (Nath).
Though much reasoning cannot be made out about why people have such beliefs but these can’t be denied outright too, not because there is any truth associated with them, but because they are associated with people’s feelings and their emotions. It is a personal choice to have faith in them or not. Neither the belief can be instilled, nor it can be removed completely from someone’s mind.
BLUM, STUART H., and LUCILLE H. BLUM. 'DO's AND DONT's: AN INFORMAL STUDY OF SOME PREVAILING SUPERSTITIONS'. Psychological Reports 35.1 (1974): 567-571. Web.
Csicop.org,. 'Superstition Bash - CSI'. N.p., 2014. Web. 18 Feb. 2015.
Nath, Shivya. 'Wish Upon A Shooting Star'. The Shooting Star. N.p., 2008. Web. 18 Feb. 2015.
Pegg, David. '25 Most Popular Superstitions Around The World'. List25. N.p., 2013. Web. 18 Feb. 2015.
Scanlon, T J et al. 'Is Friday The 13Th Bad For Your Health?'. BMJ 307.6919 (1993): 1584-1586. Web.