Superstitions in India refers collectively to thousands of unfound belief and myth and it keeps changing with religions and communities. That means with every new religion and community, you get a new superstition to add in your list. Although some of the people say “it’s all rubbish” but you we’ll be surprised to know that many people in India blindly believe in such things. So, here’s a list of some of the most common superstitions in Indian culture.
1. When a Black Cat crosses one’s Path
You must be thinking what’s the big deal if a cat is crossing the road that means she’s going somewhere. But no, some superstitious people here in India takes it very differently and consider it as a bad luck. According to them, if a black cat or any cat crosses your path either you will meet an accident ahead or the work you are going for will not be done or you’re going to have a bad day. And you know what’s the funniest part in this? The Cure. They actually wait for someone else to cross the road first so that the curse gets shifted to them. If waited so long, they make a cross sign using their fingers and cancel the curse. Hahaha!
2. Hanging Lemon & Chilly
During the old days, people used to hang chilly and lemon in their shops and home to make the surrounding air clean. According to them, the string attached to it absorbs all the nutrients present in it and releases it into the air to make it clean. Now a day it has turned into a superstition and has become the most common technique of those several methods used to ward off an Evil eye. It is believed that hanging a lemon with seven chilies outside your house or shop will keep ‘Alakshmi’ – the goddess of misfortune, away from your family and business. People who believe in such totems says that the goddess of misfortunes like Sour and pungent things. Therefore, the goddess eats the chilly-lemon and satisfy her hunger outside, then leave without entering into your house or shop. Unbelievable!
There are many more stories and unfounded belief linked with the chilly-lemon fallacy. Some superstitious people also use it to ward off Spirits, while some use it to recognize whether a person is possessed by a spirit or not.
3. Kohl on Babies Face
Like the chilly-lemon method which is used to avoid evil eyes, a very similar kind of trickery is used to ward off evil eyes from babies. Most of the Indian women apply kohl or ‘kajal’ on their Babies face (or elsewhere on the body) to protect them from ‘Buri Nazar’. While some thinks, that applying kohl to Babies eyes will protect it from the harmful rays and will keep the Babies eyes cool. As I have already told you, with different religion and community you get to know about different methods of cure. Putting Kohl on Babies face was just one of those several methods.
4. Broken Mirror
In Indian culture (especially in Hindu culture) it is believed that a mirror has the power to capture one’s soul in it. So, breaking the mirror can bring seven years of bad luck. Some people believes that breaking of a glass before starting any work is a sign of good luck. While the other takes it as a bad omen. According to the people who consider it inauspicious, one should not keep a broken mirror or glass in their house, one should not see their face in a broken or dirty mirror because doing so can make your day go from bad to worse.
But do you know? It was all just a trick! Back in 18th & 19th century, people used to say all those things just to protect mirrors/glasses from breaking. And this “handle with care” trick of our grand-grandfathers has now turned into a superstition.
5. Lucky & Unlucky Numbers
Here in India, people carry different opinion about numbers too. Some based on religion, culture and individual belief while some based on unfortunate events in the past. Like the Number 7 is considered as a lucky number, why? The answer is – Why there are only seven colors in a rainbow? Why there are only seven notes in music? because 7 is God’s Number. Whereas, the number 3, 8 & 13 is taken as the most unfavorable of them all. Some of the numerologists also refer number ‘8’ as a sign of destruction. Apart from all this lucky and unlucky numbers, 26 is considered as an ominous number. This is because, most of the miserable events that had ever happened in India, dated “26”.
6. Flittering of Eyes & Palm Itches
Twitching of eyes is considered as both lucky and unlucky, depending on the gender and which side of the eye is twitching. People believe that twitching of right eye is usually a sign of success. Either you are about to hear some good news related to your career or family or, somehow you are going to make a profit in your business. On the other hand, twitching of left eye is considered as a bad omen and invites bad luck. It is totally opposite in the case of women, twitching of left eye is a sign of good luck and right as a bad. There’s a quite similarity between ‘Twitching of eyes’ and ‘Palm itching’ superstition. People carry similar thoughts and belief about both of them in terms of money. Some believe that itching in right palm brings money while itching in left palm means money to be paid out.
7. Putting a Knife Under Pillow
If you are experiencing sleepless night because of nightmares, don’t worry! There’s a simple solution to get rid of this problem. Just put a knife or scissor under your pillow before sleeping and it will keep you away from bad dreams. People believe that sleeping with a knife (Khanjar) under your bed will give you a pleasant sleep by negotiating all your negative thoughts into positive. During the time of Maharajas, the Knife was also considered as a person and used for marriage proposals.
8. Do not Sweep after Sunset
No matter how filthy your room is, using a broom after sunset means you are sweeping away money from you. In Hindu culture, Evening is considered as the time of Goddess Lakshmi (Goddess of wealth & fortune) therefore sweeping will drive her away. Some people take it as an invitation to poverty hence, it is inauspicious to sweep the floor after Sunset. During the old times when there was no source of electricity, people used to use this trickery just to save their jewels and precious items from getting lost.
9. Tuesdays, Thursdays & Saturdays
In Hindu religion, it is inauspicious to eat non-vegetarian food on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays & Festivals. The reason behind this belief is totally religious. Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays & Festivals are considered to be God’s day in Hindu culture So, people avoid eating meat on these auspicious days. Whereas, some People don’t shave, get a haircut or cut their nails on Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday believing that it will invite bad luck.
Though I have heard about all these superstitions, but never believed in any. What about you guys?
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