Are you superstitious? The moment you drop a glass, you run to find a wood to knock on simultaneously saying “simbako intawon, palayo sa pito ka lawod”. Is this a familiar scenario? Knock on wood is a superstition that ward off evil spirits. This expression is also used in the hope that a good thing will continue after one acknowledges the luck.
What is superstition?
Wikipedia define superstition as – a credulous belief or notion, not based on reason or knowledge. The word is often used pejoratively to refer to folk beliefs deemed irrational. This leads to some superstitions being called “old wives’ tales“. It is also commonly applied to beliefs and practices surrounding luck, prophecy and spiritual beings, particularly the belief that future events can be foretold by specific unrelated prior events.
Filipinos are known to be superstitious. This is part of the culture that cannot be easily disposed of. Here are few of the Filipino superstitious beliefs I have grown up with and unfortunately believed in for sometime.
1) Accidentally dropping a fork on the floor means a male visitor will drop by your house. A spoon means a female visitor.
2) A woman eating twin banana means you will give birth to twins, that’s why I was so afraid to eat twin bananas before.
3) When one dreams of teeth falling out means death of a loved one. I was even told that if I happen to dream of my teeth falling out, I should bite my pillow and turn it upside down.
4) Friday the 13th is considered an unlucky day or spells disaster if you travel during this day.
5) Gifting a loved one with a handkerchief will make her cry.
6) Sweeping the floor at night is like sweeping your good fortune away.
7) Pregnant women should never go outdoors during solar eclipse as the unborn child will develop deformity.
8) If you break a mirror, you will have seven years of bad luck.
9) Garlic hung in windows is effective in warding off witches, vampires and evil spirits.
10) A snake coming in your dream means someone is going to betray you.
11) Anything red that is carried or placed in the pocket during an event will bring good luck.
12) The moment you sneeze, the person around you will have to say “Bless you”.
13) The stairs of the house should be odd numbers to bring luck to the family.
14) You should go back home when a cat crosses your path as this is a bad omen.
15) Don’t pose or take pictures in three as the person in the middle will die first.
Aside from being superstitious, many Filipinos believed in card reading, palm reading and other forms of fortune-telling. Many relied on these superstitions for their everyday lives that sometimes they cannot decide for themselves unless they consult fortune tellers.
Nobody can dictate our lives. We are the one responsible of our own fate and destiny. Instead of believing in these superstitious beliefs, one should work hard for their future. It is us who molds what lies ahead of us. At the end of the day, it is still us who decides and responsible of our own lives.