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Sunday, January 11, 2009

Indian superstitions

Superstitions are integral part of Indian tradition and society. The daily life of us is governed by beliefs and superstitions. Each day in a week is dedicated to superstions. And since my infancy i have been hearing loads about it from my elders i felt like jotting them down herein my blog as another post. Hope it will be an interesting topic to read. So lets start from days of week.

It is believed that Monday is not an auspicious day for shaving and cutting hair. Likewise Thursdays and saturdays are not good for washing hair. Tuesday is believed to be not good to reach any body's home from a journey. Saturday is considered bad for purchasing metal or leather. As it brings bad luck in terms of financial prosperity. Again for some people purachsing of metals on saturday is lucky. SUPERSTITIONS!!!

If we go a bit further, we all know about a common superstition, we have been hearing since our childhood, crossing of our path by black cat is a bad omen. And interestingly, if somebody gets even a small wound within 4-5 hours of that incidence, he will curse that black cat who has crossed his path hours back not realising his mistake. Again calling a person from back when he is leaving home for the day is considered as bad omen. Likewise theres another superstition, if somebody is going leaving home for days work and you sneeze thrice, its a bad omen. I did it several times during my childhood. And elders used to tell me to sneeze once more to distroy this omen. lol

Again if your head bumps into another person's head, black dog will bite you. So in order to vanish this effect you have to bump your head once again into that person's head. Another one is you mustn't sprinkle common salt over the floor, as in the next birth you'll be reborn as a bird and you have to collect each grain of the salt (which is considered painful for the birds). Another one eating sweet curd before exams brings good luck. Though for this one particularly i feel its scientific, as curd has cooling effect. And so it relaxes our mind. So this implies some of the superstitions are scientific too.

Another one very common, if a girl (not sure about guys) eats directly from kadhai during cooking something, it will rain in her marriage. Some of my friends have experienced it, and they tell me "i ate directly, thats why." lol I still am not sure why it happened with all of them.. And i have heard people saying if it rains simultaneously with sun shinning over, it imples some jackal is being married somewhere in jungle. hahaha.. This one is the most funny one.

Watching elephant during a journey is a good omen as it symbolises with Lord Ganesha, mythological God in Indian tradition. Seeing Peacock is also considered as good omen while hearing its shrill sound is considered bad omen. Falling of utensils, or creating sounds from pair of tongs is considered bad. Footwears upside down brings fights in family.

There are many such superstitions which have become a part of our daily lives. Adding some different flavour in our lives. I just wish after reading it you wont curse and blame that innocent cute black cat which is going on her way, for bringing bad luck to you. :)


  1. On a extreme note i always believed superstitions are ridiculous and don't make any logical sense. Some of them i think were made for people to do certain things good for health or otherwise. e.g. curd before exam may be to force people have curd (which might have some nutritional value) which otherwise people would have avoided. So other than such reasons, it makes little sense.


  2. its all in the mind.... really I don't feel there's any truth in it although i feel their might have been some reasons behind it. 4 eg. one is not supposed to cut nails in the evening. my logic behind this one was that in old days there was no electricity and so the nails would be scattered here and there and also get mixed with the food. yucky! so that's why.. superstitions are not only these trademark ones but some are also personalised.. that if i wear this particular dress my chances of winning are highest.. one should have confidence in oneself rather than the dress..
    and about the raining in one's marriage .. well 4 testing i guess i'll get married in thar or sahara desert. what say?

  3. @aditi: even better, ask ppl living in deserts to eat only in kadhai...wat say :)

    The costliest superstition is wearing ring with stones......Dont anyone amongst us, wears it ???

    Anyways, I ll put it this way...if following one doesnt affects others..I dont mind.

    But yes, things like not letting downtroddens into temple, saying God would get angry..should be ridiculed. Or forcing ladies to plough fields to please even more disgusting!

    In my case, I sometimes follow superstitions if it pleases elders(and doesnt affect me..):)

    And for that cute lil cat, if I stop going out coz it crossed my way, I ll be confined to my home as there are too many, where I stay.

    There is one more supt that pregnant ladies should not go out during eclipse...any expert comment on that ??

  4. hmm not a bad idea.. lets try both and then we can publish it as' a recent study on superstitions says....' :) and about the eclipse well its not only 4 pregnant ladies. the uv rays do harm us too if exposed 4 a longer time. that's why we wear protective gear 4 our eyes dont we? so thats not a superstition.. it applies the same rule as it does with pregnant ladies not undergoing x ray .

  5. @ rahul
    Yaa.. thats what i feel too..They dont make any sense.. But as relentless seeker said, i too follow a bit to please others.. Whats the harm!! :)

    @ aditi
    i totally agree with you. There are some reasons (scientific ones) behind some of them.. Eg. Nails things (as u said), curd, and may be not going under banyan tree during night is may be becuz plants give CO2 during night, when the process of photosynthesis shuts down.. which is not good for health.. So yeah some reasons are scientific i feel.

    Again when we say we score more due to wearing particular dress, sometimes these superstions injects confidence in ourselves. They are good as long as they dont de-motivate us from working hard or hurts somebody.

    I would love to attend ur wedding in sahara btw.. it'll be fun.. but if it'll rain during ur marriage, i really wud love to c ur expression and reaction .. lol

    @ relentless seeker
    Good points.. I totally agree on a few things.. Like most of us wear Particular stones expecting them to charm our lives.. Most of us.. and i am very sure that there must be some or the other superstition, (atleast one), we follow sincerely..

  6. i don't think the one about the jackals getting married is a superstition. It has actually been derived from a folk tale

  7. Theres a very old story i would like to narrate here. Since it can be interesting read in our discussion about superstitions. Its a story about Akbar and Birbal i read it years ago.
    Once upon a time in Akbar's kingdom there was a man who was regarded as inauspicious by the masses. And it was believed that whoever sees his face first in the morning, encounters something bad. So one morning Akbar woke up and went for a walk and saw this man. After coming back to his palace, his thumb got injured. So he asked his servants to call that inauspicious man and declared to cut his head off next morning, as he is brings bad luck to people so he has no right to live. So the man was in shock and depression. When he was on his way, thinking about his family and how to break this news to them, he met Birbal.
    Birbal asked him about his problem and told him something. So the man went home, relieved from tensions. Next morning when he was about to get punished, the King asked him about his last wish. He simply said," i want justice, my Lord, I want you to decide who is worth punishment. You saw me yesterday morning, and your thumb got injured. And i saw you yesterday and i am loosing my life. You have to decide who is more unlucky, if i am worth punishment because of bringing bad luck to people, you must also be punished". King realised his mistake and smiled at Birbal, thanking him from saving him again from the crime which he was about to commit.

    So yes I strongly believe that believing superstitions for sake of others is fine as long as we don't intrude in anybody's life or snatch away somebody's comfortability zone!! wtsay

  8. hhmm...nice story!

    thats what, sometimes we get so pre-occupied with absurd notions that we override logical and rationale thinking. So I try to not lend my ears for stupid conclusions. Instead, draw my own(stupid) conclusions from my own experiences. :)

  9. Somethings in life, we can't help.
    Luckily, if they aren't causing any harm, we don't have to.

    Which isn't always the case with superstitions.


Thankyou for your feedback :)

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