Friday, January 1, 2010

Superstition, Wives Tales, Folklore, Omens, Lucky and Unlucky Things

The picture above was taken new years day at our company basecamp near Dai Loc Vietnam. If you look close you will see a rosary around my neck along with my dog tags. The rosary was given to me by my grandmother, before I left for Nam. She was a devote catholic and very religious person. I was raised a catholic but did not use the rosary as it was intended. I wore it as a good luck charm, to ward off harm or injury in battle. At that time it was as important to me as my helmut and flak jacket. Warriors are very superstitious. Some of my friends had certain rituals they would go through every day. There were a number of catholics in my platoon. We would go to Mass every time we had an oppurtunity. The day after we attended a Mass one of my friends was killed in an ambush. Myself and my other catholic friends decided we wouldn't attend Mass any more and we didn't. We basically established a new superstition by not going to Mass.

I am usually skepticle about things at first, especailly if it is something new or if it has to do with someone else's experience or belief. But, more so today than in the past, I am a seeker of the truth. And try to do so with an open mind. That is why I approach this subject.

Here are but a few of the many things I came up with after doing a search on Google.
I will make a comment on some as I go along.

ACORN-To carry one brings good luck
(This probably comes from Celtic beliefs which venerate the mighty oak)
BELL-The sound is said to drive away evil spirits
(Bikers hang a spirit bell on the underside of thier motorcyle to ward off evil spirits. I have a steel plate in my leg that disputes this one. Although someone said I should have had my bell blessed.)
BIRD- If a bird comes into your house it is a sign of death.
BROOM- You should immediatly sweep out the room of an unwelcome guest to prevent thier return
CHILL-A chill up your back or goosebumps means someone is walking on your grave
(Ok, this one reinforces my belief in Reincarnation. I haven't been buried yet in this life.)
CIRCLE-If you stand inside a circle evil spirits can't harm you
(This ties into Wiccan beliefs. But there are other groups that follow this thinking also. Native Americans hold this belief. The circle is a powerful symbol and has many meanings to the earth based religions of ancient peoples.)
COWS-If a cow raises it's tail it's a sign of rain
(For us country folk it's usually a sign of something a little more fowl.)
FISH- A fish should be eaten from the head toward the tail/A fish should be eaten from the tail toward the head
(Ok, you notice this is written in opposing versions. So what do I do? I'll probably just eat the darn fish.)
GARLIC-Keeps evil spirits and vampires away
(Will probably keep friends away as well)
HORSESHOE-Should be hung with the ends pointing up, so it will catch luck
KNITTING-Knit one of your hairs into a garment to bind the person who recieves it to you
LEAF-Catch a falling leaf on the 1st day of autum and it will prevent a cold that year
MISTLETOE-Protects your house from lightning and thunder
OPALS-Should only be worn by people born in October
SCISSORS-If you drop a pair a loved one is being unfaithful
SHOES-Bad luck to leave upside down
SPARROWS-They carry the souls of the dead,unlucky to kill one
(I am in deep do-do on this one. As a child, me and my daisy air gun dispatched many a soul packin sparrow.)
VEILS-A brides veil protects her form evil spirits, who are jealous of happy people
WATERMELON-Swallow a seed and it will grow in your stomach
(Now I have a perfectly good excuse for my big belly)
WEATHER-Red sky at night, sailors delight/Red sky at morning, sailors warning
( This one you can count on, just tells it like it is.)

I think if a superstition has a positive effect on your mental well being that it is ok. However, if it is negative in nature it should be disregarded. Because negative sayings are based on fear and discrimination. X.

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