Superstitions Common To India

Superstitions are a sign of fallacies that tend to take root in a society that tends to rely more upon traditions than rationality. It is also an outcome of over-reliance on empirical and anecdotal evidence while ignoring the theoretical basis. Indian superstitions are a result of an age old civilization, and in a way indicate both human weaknesses as well as civilizational vulnerabilities.
Superstitions Common to India
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In India, one can find any number of superstitions. While many of them can be associated with ignorance and lack of scientific temperament, some are associated with fear of bad luck or old mythological tales. Many of them are funny, but all of them make interesting reading.


Superstitions in India

Superstitions are particularly common in older societies with lots of traditions and as one of the oldest societies with innumerable traditions, India has its own share of superstitions. These superstitions vary from region to region and sometimes families to families. Certain individuals have their own unique superstitions as well, which arise from

their peculiar experiences or idiosyncrasies.

Superstitions associated with Fear of Bad Luck

Superstitions often relate with fear and anxiety. When a person is too anxious about something, he or she will like to avoid everything that could lead to trouble, even if the probability is remote. Same is true of many superstitions in India. Thus many simple events have come to be superstitiously associated as harbingers of bad luck. An example is one's path getting crossed by a cat. It is considered to bring some misfortune, and no one usually likes that to happen, especially when he is going on an important mission. Some very superstitious persons may even go back and take some other route, but such idiosyncratic cases are very rare to find now a days.

Another event superstitiously associated with bad luck is someone calling you just when you leave the house. It is considered inauspicious and some people dislike it. In the villages, many superstitions are associated with married women. Traditionally married women wear 'bangles', place 'sindur' (a red colored powder) on their forehead, while widows do not wear them and instead wear white clothes. Breaking of bangles of a married woman is considered a bad omen, so is falling of sindur. Wearing of white clothes by married women is also considered inauspicious, and so usually in villages, you will not find married women wearing pure white clothes.

Some Funny Superstitions

Some superstitions are casual as well as funny. One of them is related with hiccups. Continuous hiccups are considered a sign of someone close badly remembering you. So a young person (man or woman) having a stream of hiccups always

gives rise to teasing questions by friends and relatives. Contrary to hiccups, sneezing is considered a bad omen. Hence, if you are about to begin an important work, or if you are about to leave for an important journey, and someone sneezes, sometimes there would be suggestions to wait a few minutes.

Some people have a lot of faith in astrological predictions. Such people try to consult with experts for everything they plan to do, in an attempt to find the most auspicious time to do it. This is especially true of marriage. Many people consult astrologers before finalizing the day of wedding. There are certain periods that are considered inauspicious, and during those days, very few people get married. On the other hand there are certain days which are considered very auspicious, so on those days you can witness a lot of weddings taking place. Earlier, when parents used to arrange the wedding of their children, they used to match astrological forecasts and characteristics of the bride and the groom, but now this practice is gradually waning.

Superstitions & Mythology

Another interesting superstition which is documented even in mythological tales is the belief that a lot of noise made by a black crow around one's house signifies unexpected guests. Most people in urban housing have little chance of this event happening but in rural areas people still wonder about it. Another superstition pertains to the belief that early morning dreams often come true. While sometimes, this can lead to anxieties, many a times a good dream can also be encouraging.
There are all kind of superstitions and people who believe in them. Most people however, neither have the time nor energy to worry about them. Once in a while, chance reinforcement can make a person or a family increasingly superstitious, but by and large, most people do not care about them, and often the younger generation is not even aware of their existence.

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