Weirdest Superstitions from Around the World
Superstition? What is superstition? who believes in this crazy myth? Believe it or not, we all do. Even if we are not aware of it or deny it, and even if it might be against our beliefs, we still find ourselves knocking on wood to prevent bad things from happening or crossing our fingers for luck. Who doesn’t think of avoiding making plans on Friday the 13th if they could! I am a little superstitious; I admit that sometimes I find myself criticizing my worries but still try to ignore my fears, so I end up taking into consideration some of these superstitions. Bottom line: It will always pass your mind.
Ok, you will notice from my list that some of these superstitions are unbelievable and bizarre, but we can’t just deny its weird effect on our life.
- Don’t put two mirrors one in front of the other: It opens a door for the devil (Origin: Mexico)
- After a funeral, don’t go straight home: An evil spirit might accompany you home. That’s why it is advised to pass at any shop before home after a funeral – I would go for some sweets, makes me happy (Origin: Philippines)
I don’t believe in superstition because it brings bad luck!
- Don’t make a toast with water: they say you will be toasting for death to the person you are doing “cheers” to (Origin: Greece)
- Friday the 13th: Keeping the best for last, this date on this specific day of the week brings bad vibes. In Spain, it is Tuesday the 13th. In Italy, Friday the 17th – Even if people say these are just myths, they try to stay away from this date anyway… just in case – Have you ever watched the movie Friday the 13th? You’ll know what I mean. (Origin: Italy)
- When your hands itch, it’s related to your financial situation: If your left hand itches, you will be paying money, and if your right hand itches, you will get some – I don’t mind itching my right hand all week. (Origin: Turkey)
- Cross fingers: It is known for wishing good luck for yourself or for someone else. (Origin: Europe)
- Don’t pass under a ladder: This is a famous superstition which symbolizes the ladder as the scaffold where they used to hang people – I never liked ladders anyway (Origin: Medieval ages)
- It is bad to say “Happy Birthday” before the day: bad luck comes with celebrating or wishing a happy birthday before “the” day. (Origin: Russia)
- Don’t step in dog poop: In fact, this is considered good luck if you step with your left foot. With the right foot, it’s bad luck – so funny. (Origin: France)
- Bird pooping on you (or your car) is good luck: Bird poop brings you loads of riches – I don’t care if it makes me the Maharaja, it just irritates me when I see my freshly washed car covered with bird poop (Origin: Russia)
- Avoid breaking any mirror: 7 years of bad luck… magic! – This is also familiar, but I personally don’t believe in it.
- Owls bring bad news: If you see or hear an owl, it is said that bad news are coming your way – I know some people who find good luck in owls – Even without knowing about this superstition, I can tell you, I find owls somehow scary because they keep glazing at you coldly. (Origin: Egypt)
- If you own an owl at home, it brings you mourning: If you pet an owl in your house, it might bring you death to a family member – ooooh spooky!! (Origin: Italy)
” Science is the great antidote to the poison of enthusiasm and superstition” – Adam Smith
- Don’t cut your hair on Tuesdays: For some countries, legend says this can bring you bad luck – So you’d better change your schedule (Origin: India)
- Offering yellow flowers is a bad gesture: Getting yellow flowers to a friend means that you are accusing them of infidelity – OK, each color has a significant meaning, and yellow means jealousy, but cursing and infidelity? Well maybe! (Origin: Russia)
- Pregnant women must fulfill their pregnancy cravings: If a pregnant woman is craving strawberries and don’t have any, the baby might have a strawberry-like birth mark somewhere on his body. (Origin: Canada)
- Knock on wood: It is naturally one of the most famous superstitions in the world. To kick out the bad things that might happen after talking about something, you knock on wood – We find ourselves doing it unconsciously, so weird!
- Full moons lead to chaos: A full moon is usually related to the werewolf myth – which I find hard to believe.
- Don’t open an umbrella indoor: If you open an umbrella before getting out of a closed place, bad luck will shower you. (Origin: Egypt & Britain)
- Saying the same word at the same time with someone else: If you do, you will never get married – I always hear people say “jinx” right after they say the same word at the time together to undo the curse; it’s a solid proof that this superstition is familiar among us.
- Stay away from that place at the corner of the table: Do you want to get married or not? if yes, don’t sit at the corner of the food table or else you will say goodbye to your wedding day . (Origin: Hungary & Russia)
- Tooth Fairy: Legend- more like a fantasy – states that if a kid keeps his tooth after falling out under his pillow overnight, the tooth fairy pays him a visit while he’s sleeping and replaces his tooth with a small amount of money – Tooth fairy, I’ll remove all my 32 teeth and put them under my pillow, will you replace it with money? (Origin: Northern Europe – English speaking countries)
- Avoid coming across a black cat: In ancient Egyptian times, a black cat was respected. Later, in the middle ages in Europe, it was considered to be related to “witches” and black magic. This is why nowadays it is considered bad luck if you see one – I see one near our house everyday, I just smile and pass by it, and my day ends up well … so far (Origin: Europe)
- Spilling salt: It is said that it is bad luck for you if you spill salt on the table accidentally. When this happens, you have to throw a pinch of salt behind you to reverse the bad luck – and I always wondered what crazy world we are living in when I saw people throwing salt behind their back (Origin: Judas Iscariot at the Last Supper)
- Don’t cut your nails at night: According to the Asian superstition, if you trim your nails after sunset, you might have an early death – I never trim my nails at night because I get injuries, I have weak eyesight in dim light. (Origin: Japan)
- Don’t pass over a child: If you jump or pass over a child, legend says that this child will never grow taller. (Origin: Turkey)
- Keep your purse away from the floor: Never put your purse on the floor or else you will be forever broke – You’d better leave a high shelf in your dresser for your bags and purses. (Origin: Brazil)
- Stay away from “number 4”: If you are Chinese, you might believe that the number four brings you bad luck as the word “four” is close to the word “death”. (Origin: China)
- Don’t fix your chopsticks straight up in your food: It resembles the number four in Asia which signifies bad luck and death. (Origin: Japan)
- Beware of scissors: Avoid bad luck by playing with scissors, that’s what the superstition says – what I say, guys just avoid it as it might be harmful, that’s all. (Origin: Egypt)
- Don’t wear red in a stormy day: Legend says that your red clothes attract lightning on a stormy day – That’s a pity, red is one of the sexiest and most attractive colors to wear. (Origin: Philippines)
- Scratch your behind when someone is talking about you: Scratching your bottom in that case keeps the envy eye away from you.
- Dripping water behind a person: You will be bringing this person good luck if you spill water behind him – But please, try not to ruin their hair brushing by spilling it on them. (Origin: Serbia)
- Don’t whistle indoors: It’s all related to evil spirits which your whistle will be calling for – For me, it’s DUH! I just don’t whistle indoor to avoid getting dust and bad smells inside my mouth. (Origin: Lithuania)
- Seeing your bride in the wedding dress before the ceremony: If the groom sees the bride in her wedding dress before the wedding ceremony, it is said that the wedding might not happen; the couple might change their mind or their relation won’t last – It’s not because of the superstition, but it’s nice if the bride keeps herself a surprise for the groom (Origin: the age of arranged marriages)
- For the bride to be, something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue: This is common nowadays especially in the West. Something old replaces the bride’s past. Something new represents the couple’s joyful future. Something borrowed should be taken from someone happily married to experience the same in her marriage-to-be, and something blue signifies love and loyalty.
- Rain on your wedding day: This signifies that the bride will get pregnant soon – If it rains on my wedding day, I will be so frustrated and mad especially if it’s an outdoor ceremony, and I will see it as a sign that I shouldn’t have gotten married.
- The groom must carry the bride over the doorstep: To avoid attracting any evil spirit towards the bride, it is said that the groom carries her to their new house – Ladies, you’d better watch your diet before your wedding (Origin: Medieval Europe)
- Smashing glass: In their wedding ceremony, the newly weds must break a vase or glass strongly to get as many pieces as possible, because the number of pieces signifies how many years they will be happily married – Guests, I advise you to stay away when this event happens (Origin: Italy)
- Babies must cry during baptism: Superstition says that if the child cries during his baptism, this means he is driving away the evil spirits around him – Well, here we believe in this myth, but that doesn’t mean that if the baby doesn’t cries, he is evil; come on!
- Avoid entering the room with your left foot: Always enter and leave the room with your right foot and not the left, as the superstition says, it brings you bad luck. (Origin: Spain)
- On new year’s eve, eat grapes: Instead of kissing one another, eat 12 grapes to get 12 lucky months – I prefer the kissing (Origin: Spain)
- Don’t chew gum at night: They say if you chew at night, it is the same as chewing dead people’s flesh – I bet this legend was invented by a mother whose kids slept with a gum in their mouth and woke up with a stuck gum in their hair, so to convince them, she made up that superstition. (Origin: Turkey)
It’s interesting to know more about superstitions, especially if you enjoy travelling here and there.
Fortunately, most of us don’t believe in many superstitions, but we can’t avoid taking some into consideration. Believing in good luck and bad luck? I do. But if you fall on your right and not your left, or if your left eye winks and not the right, well I would say “hey, it’s a bit exaggerating!”
For those who believe in superstition, Good Luck!