Superstitions & Blind Beliefs in India
-Jainismus Mahavir Sanglikar
Like any other countries, you will find a lot of superstitions and blind beliefs in people of India. The number of superstitions and blind beliefs in India is very large as the Indian society is made of people belonging to various religious, cultural, ethnic, linguistic and racial groups. There are many common superstitions in the people belonging to various groups. On the other hand each group has some special blind beliefs and superstitions.
The origin of the blind beliefs and superstitions in India is in the cultural exchange between different groups, both indigenous and foreign.
Some blind beliefs and superstitions are actually not blind beliefs and superstitions, but some wisdom, and also experiences of people for a long time.
My this article gives you a brief information on the topic.
Religious Superstitions & Blind Beliefs
Everybody who belong to a religion thinks that his or her religion is the greatest, scientific etc. The religion except Jainism and Buddhism believe in creator God. But most of the Jains and Buddhist also believe in such imaginary God. I think that God is the biggest superstition in the world, and the root cause of many of the superstitions and blind beliefs.
Most of the people in India who believe in God, visit temples, Churches, Dargahs etc. and pray for their worldly requirements. They think that the God will fulfill their wishes. In exchange, these people offer something worldly, to the imaginary God. Such offering includes Coconut, Donation, Gold ornaments, Chaddar (a coverlet) etc.
Hindus consider Cow as an auspicious animal. They believe that there are 33 Crores of Gods in the body of Cow.
Superstitions & Blind Beliefs Related to Numbers
* Number 1, 5, 10, 11, 21, 51, 101, 108, 501, 1001, 1008 are considered as auspicious number in majority of people, and these numbers have a special importance in Jainism and Hinduism.
* Number 3 is considered as an inauspicious or evil number. orthodox people avoid this number. Traveling by three persons together is avoided.
* Number 786 is considered as an auspicious and lucky one number in Muslim community.
* Many people believe in numerology. They prefer their own lucky numbers for there vehicles etc. and are ready to pay big fee for getting such numbers.
Superstitions & Blind Beliefs Related to Directions
* In Hindu and Jain society, East and North directions are considered as auspicious, South is considered inauspicious. West is also considered as inauspicious, but not as inauspicious as South. They avoid to build a home, shop, or any type of building, of which the frontage of the building comes to South. Preferred direction is East, and then North.
* Right side is considered as auspicious, while left side is considered as inauspicious. In any religious rituals, people use their right hand. In rituals wife always sit on left side of her husband as she is considered as a secondary 'thing'. Even at the time of the marriage, the place of the bride is at the left of the groom.
* people give or take money, ornaments, gifts or even a flower by right hand only.
* Sleeping head facing North or West is avoided.
Superstitions & Blind Beliefs Related to Days
* Most people avoid cutting their nails on Saturday. They also avoid to shave of cut hairs on this day.
* Buying certain things on Saturday is avoided. Such things include edible oil.
* Many people avoid to make payments on Saturday.
* Buying of any new things including Land, House, vehicles, TV, Fridge, Ornaments, Computers is preferred on auspicious days, especially on the days of festivals.
* No moon day is considered as an inauspicious day. Many people think that at the night of No moon day, Ghosts come out and wander here and there.
* Eclipse of Sun or Moon is considered as a bad astrological sign. many people avoid buying, traveling, starting new business on such occasions.
* New shops are started only on auspicious days, especially on festivals.
* Inauspicious days are avoided for shifting home. Some people do not travel on inauspicious days.
The origin of superstitions about Saturday is in cultural and business contacts with Jewish people, who were settled in West coast of India.
The superstition about Saturday has given birth to a saying in Marathi language: Naakartyaacha Vaar Shaniwar, means Saturday is the day of hopeless people.
Superstitions & Blind Beliefs Related to Animals
As I have written above, cow is considered as an auspicious animal in Hindus. Urine of a cow is a sacred thing for many Hindus. The tail of cow is considered as the most sacred part of this animal. For Hindus, cow is mother.
Besides cow, elephant and snake are auspicious animals for Hindus.
Crow is an important bird in India in the sense of blind beliefs. If a crow crows in front of a home, it is considered as an intimation of coming of relatives or guests.
Owl is considered as an inauspicious bird.
If a lizard falls on one's head or body, he is going to die soon. (But in actual, he lives in fear of death for many days, and then forgets it).
If a bird drops on your head or body, it is a good luck.
More Superstitions and Blind Beleifs
* People do not sweep their house at night, otherwise, Lakshmi, the Goddess of prosperity will leave the home, they think. Actually, this was to avoid missing of small valuable things while sweeping when there was no electricity in older days. But the tradition is continue.
* Most people think that matching of horoscope is a must thing in choosing a bride or groom, for their happy life.
* Student eat curd with sugar or jaggery before going to exams. They believe that it will bring good marks.
* Breaking of mirror is a bad sign.
* Showing a mirror to kids is avoided.
* Just before few decades, taking photographs of kids was avoided.
* Putting a small spot of lampblack on a cheek of kids save them from all evils.
* Wearing a black thread around your waist will save you from all evils.
* When leaving home if one sees a widow, that is not a good sign for him.
* If someone is going out, one should not ask him "Where are you going?". If someone asks such question while you are going out, it is not a good sign.
* One should not give salt in other's hand. If you give it hand there will be a quarrel between them in near future.
* If the coins in your hand accidentally fall down, you are going to get money. (So true, as you pick up the coins and thus get money).
* If your shoes are stolen by someone, you are a lucky man. All the evil things with you are gone now. (+ You get new shoes...)
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