Cultural Superstitions

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Today is Friday the 13th. As I sit here, I think of all the superstitious theory and thoughts which surround Friday the 13th. I am just amazed. And yet, it is good every once in a while to suspend belief even if for the day and let a little fun to come into our lives.

When I was the Shop manager out in California for a satellite system, the technicians who work for me always got together on a Friday the 13th, inscribed their names into a mirror which they would then break on Friday afternoon. They did this to show that they held no fear of Friday the 13th or any superstitions. I believe they did it to have some fun and build morale.

Friday the 13th was never in my mind a bad day. The dreadful day to be superstitious of, for me, was Saturday the 14th. I always seemed to break my glasses on a Saturday the 14th.

I never meant to break my glasses, that was a huge no-no in the family. Yet, when I was a kid, whether it was climbing a tree or something else if my glasses were to break it was always on the Saturday after Friday the 13th. I try not to be superstitious. I do believe that in large part we are masters of our own fate and that we need to take care of ourselves. Truthfully, I was, and still am, a klutz. Yet there’s not too much I can do about that.

Superstitions are fun because they remind of our culture and our ties to others in our community. Every culture has stories and fables and superstitions. The stories give some sort of a warning that usually goes to kids. Often, a scary tale is told to help keep everybody in line and doing the right thing.

People do it because their parents do it. Their parents did because their parents did it and so on, and so forth, all the way back to the beginning of their culture.

People say that some stories in the Old Testament and warnings about what to eat and not eat were put there to help keep people healthy. There was science, even if it was the science of observation behind the ‘do this’ and ‘don’t do that.’ It is something to consider and think on. 

I highly recommend that a little research into finding out why we believe what we believe helps tremendously. The stories and celebrations of our cultures are not just superstitions.  They are morale boosters which bring us together as a people and help us to feel good.

 

Author: Mike Balof

Mike Balof, MEd, develops intensive, interactive courses which have helped contract manufacturing and nonprofit institutions. He taught youth and adults seeking employment to better represent themselves, leading many of them to successful careers. Mike taught in corporate training, teaching adults and high school students to build computers, work as a team, and to identify and fix problems using a myriad of tools from Total Quality Management(TQM), to 8-D, to Six Sigma. Mike now turns his talents to helping fellow veterans reach their objectives and desires through continuous performance improvement. As we start to live in a post knowledge world, where a doubling of common knowledge shrinks from months to days, our essential skills will include how we interact with those around us. Mike believes there is hope for growth and opportunity for everyone. Everyone has the opportunity to retool and find the career they want. Mike strives to present students of all ages, abilities, and means with a full plate of options for learning.

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