Halloween is on Sunday and a lot of you are preparing for trick or treaters and spooky Halloween parties. Halloween has never been one of my favorite holidays. But, I do decorate a little bit and we always have treats for the tick or treaters. Of course I make up goodie bags for our grandchildren too.
I thought this was the perfect opportunity to blog about superstitions. Yes, I am a little superstitious. If I spill salt I always toss a bit over my shoulder. Well both shoulders, better safe than sorry. During the Middle Ages salt was a very expensive commodity and was widely used for medicinal purposes. If you were to spill any salt, you were then to immediately throw it over your left shoulder to strike the nasty spirits in the eye, thus preventing sickness.
A few simple explanations for some popular superstitions:
Knocking on wood- Long ago it was believed that wood sprites lived in the wood (trees). When in need of some good luck, someone make a wish to a tree and then touched the bark, representing the first “knock.” The second “knock” was to say “thank you.” Knocking on the wood was often thought of as a source for protection. Did you know you are always supposed to knock from the bottom of the wood to top so you don’t knock the luck out?
Breaking a mirror- It was once believed that a person’s reflection in a mirror represented their soul. If you were to break that reflection, it would then be harmful to your soul.
Don’t’ walk under a ladder-Now I think this is just common sense. But, long ago the triangle was considered a symbol of life. Walking through any triangular shape (like a ladder leaning against a wall) was considered to be tempting one’s fate.
Black cat crosses your path– In the Middle Ages; it was believed that black cats were witches companions. After seven years the cats turned into witches, devils or demons. No one wanted to cross paths with a witch or a demon.
Important note– did you notice that all of these superstitions started long ago? Curious why there are no new ones. You should be laughing by now.
Happy Halloween Everyone