Superstition and Myths

Research and study by: Timothy M. Youngblood
Copyright © The Master's Table

Just like our study titled "Is that in the bible" we thought it would be interesting to look at some superstitions and myths with the meanings, and where they came from. We will not cover many superstitions and myths here but just a few good ones to make the point. Just for the record I do not believe superstitions. Many of us learned some superstitions at a young age, like breaking a mirror which can even make most people shudder for a brief moment! When I break a mirror I think about my mother saying I will have seven years misfortune. Well my answer to that is I know I have not broken that many mirrors but I have had misfortune every year of my life and many people I know have also. Ironically the very term "fortune, or misfortune" comes from superstition as well. Fortuna, was propitiated by mothers. Traditionally her cult was introduced to Rome by Servius Tullius. All over the Roman world, Fortuna was worshipped at a great number of shrines under various titles that were applied to her according to the various circumstances of life in which her influence was hoped to have a positive effect. Fortuna was not always positive: she was doubtful (Fortuna Dubia); she could be "fickle fortune" (Fortuna Brevis), or downright evil misfortune.(Fortuna Mala).Her name seems to derive from the Italic goddess Vortumna, "she who revolves the year".

We found in our research that there are some very good reason for superstitions. Like the one you will have seven years bad luck if you break a mirror. Where did this come from and why. The reason is not only very simple but useful. As we all know there were very few mirrors a hundred years ago and beyond, as well as being very expensive. Because children as well as movers may not be very careful with them the curse was placed so the one thing they would remember is if they broke it; well you know…seven years of bad luck would follow them around. We found that there are a lot of other myths concerning mirrors during our research but will not go into them here. The same is true for not spilling salt. The superstition of bad luck would cause people to be cautious not to spill this rare and expensive product that was used for preserving meat.

Knock on wood:
How many times have you heard someone say "I hope to get there safely," and then they knock on a piece of wood? Where did the practice of knocking on wood come from and what did it mean? We found that many years ago in England a robber, or even a murderer could run to the Church and find sanctuary from those wanting to hang them. But before he could enter the Church he had to knock on the large "wooden" doors, thus knocking on wood to prevent something bad from happening became a superstition.

What about why people believe that a "Black Cat" crossing their path would bring bad luck? The answer we found is very amusing. Back when witches were feared and hunted it was believed their spirit could posses any living thing. (Thus the biblical story of Jesus casting the evil spirits into the swine.) When the people would go after the witch and burn her at the stake they noticed a Black cat running away and it was rumored that the witch always had one around the house. It was believed that the Witches spirit, or the demon that possessed her, used the swiftness and blackness of the cat to escape and anyone trying to get in the way would be cursed.

The crucifix
This amulet comes from paganism long before Jesus was born and is one of the key sacramental  amulets used by Catholics and has been used to ward off evil for centuries. The imperial cross of Conrad II (1024–1039) referred to the power of the cross against evil. Many of the early theologians of the Catholic Church made reference to use of the sign of the cross by Christians to bless and to ward off demonic influences. The crucifix is still widely used as a talismanic sacramental by Christians. What about crossing the fingers behind the back if one was not telling the truth? The crossed fingers represented the belief in the cross and if the fingers where crossed then the person was exempt from the lie.

The St. Christopher medal
This medal is supposed to keep people safe when traveling and many Catholics would never go anywhere without it. The name Christopher is a word meaning "bearing Christ” or Christ-bearer. That's why it was chosen by Satan, to draw people away from their TRUE SAVIOR! To cause people to pray to a dead man for protection, instead of the living Christ who has power over all circumstances in life. Question: How many people have died in accidents, or war that had a St. Christopher medal on their person?

The St. Benedict medal
A well-known amulet among Catholic Christians is the Saint Benedict medal which includes the Vade Retro Satana formula to ward off Satan. This medal has been in use at least since the 18th century and in 1742 it received the approval of Pope Benedict XIV. It later became part of the Roman Catholic ritual.

The raven
Like the black cat the Raven has a close affinity with the supernatural world and to the Celtic goddesses. Ravens are believed to be birds of omen in Druid augury, who predict the future by studying the flight of the birds. The raven is also believed to be an oracular bird, and a bearer of messages from the underworld.

Sneezes and then "God bless you"
If a person sneezes you are supposed to bless them. This came about during Roman times when people believed that a sneeze could release your soul to the world. They believed that you were having some sort of internal struggle to hold onto your soul and offering you a blessing was a way of helping out. "God Bless you" became the materialization of that assistance. When the Black Death plague came about in 1348 AD sneezing became a sign of the sick and infected. It meant the person was going to die so it became customary and law to bless the sneezer.

Friday the 13th
It is Friday the 13th and we all need to be extra careful "Right?" Where did this get started and why? We found that fear of Friday the 13th is rooted in ancient times with the number 13 and the day Friday which is the sixth day of the week. The numbers important to occultists are 33, 3, 13, 666, or just 6. The two unlucky entities of 13 and the sixth day (Friday) combine to make one super unlucky day. There is a Biblical reference to the unlucky number 13. It is believed that Judas, the apostle who betrayed Jesus was the 13th guest to the Last Supper. We also found that a particularly bad Friday the 13th occurred in the middle ages. On a Friday the 13th in 1306, King Philip of France arrested the revered Knights Templar and began torturing them marking the occasion as a day of evil. In ancient Rome, witches reportedly gathered in groups of 12. The 13th was believed to be the devil. Both Friday and the number 13 were once closely associated with capital punishment. In British tradition, Friday was the conventional day for public hangings, and there were supposedly 13 steps leading up to the noose. Ever wonder why many tall buildings have no 13th Floor and did you know that Airplanes avoid the 13th aisle?

What about the number 13? Yes our research found that the number 13 is used by those that worship Satan, but does this fact mean the number should be feared? Let's think about some points that are the other side of the coin. Although most Americans believe the number 13 is unlucky we find that our country began with 13 original colonies and had 13 signers of the Declaration of Independence. It was the 13th Amendment that abolished slavery and 13 stripes is proudly shown on our flag. 13 letters are in the words "E Pluribus Unum." And there are 13 stars above the National Eagle, plus 13 arrows in the Eagle's talons, which is also on the back of our one dollar bill. So if it were not for superstition, Americans would most likely associate 13 with patriotism and good luck. This just goes to show that we humans get caught up in things that just are not true. We believe it because someone stated it was true, or it is what our family has believed for generations.

There are many signs and symbols from around the world that are seen as lucky. Others are thought to bring good fortune to the people that possess them. Many thousands of Christians believe these symbols can grant wishes or even heal the sick. There are also several symbols for warding off evil curses that they believe in without thinking about Jesus or if they do they place Him in it. Who can name some symbols that people use for luck or fortune and remember what we covered at the very beginning about where the term fortune came from.

Four Leaf Clover-is an old symbol that means good luck to the person who finds one. What do the leaves symbolize? One leaf is for FAITH...The second for HOPE... The third for LOVE... And the fourth for LUCK! In Irish tradition the Shamrock or Three-leaf Clover represents the Holy Trinity:

Horseshoe-The horseshoe is considered lucky and used to be hung in many homes to protect and attract good fortune for the family residing inside. The blacksmith was thought to have special powers because he worked with fire and Iron.

Lucky Rabbit's foot- Rabbits and hares were considered very lucky animals as they were associated with spring and the return of flowers and other plants. Spring was also a time of fertility and so rabbits were considered good luck to be seen running through the fields.

Wishbones have become a common tradition at Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter dinners. The general rule is that the wishbone is saved from the turkey or chicken dinner and dried overnight. The next day, two people snap it while making a wish. Each person uses their pinky finger to pull on an end. After the bone has broken, the one with the larger bit is granted their wish.

Acorn luck symbol - The acorn is considered to be an emblem of good luck, prosperity, youthfulness and power, the acorn is a good luck symbol. The Norse believed that acorns displayed on a windowsill would protect a house from lightening.

Feathers are an ancient charm for bringing good luck and they represent the journey of the soul to the other realm.

Symbols have meaning and we need to heed them and beware lest we are caught up in pagan worship. We were even taught many myths in school and we to often rely on what some teacher stated without thinking about it, and then we repeat it as truth. One such thing is that "No two snow flakes are alike." Can this be true? Think about the fact that there are many trillions of snow flakes in one good snow fall and only a few thousand have ever been catalogued. The truth is that the number of snow flakes that have fallen for thousands of years is vastly larger than the number of possible shapes. In truth untold millions of snow flakes are alike, yet we believe what we're told.

Many Christians have been lead to believe that they have been set free from superstitions and myths, but have they? Have you checked into what your church still teaches that very well could be superstition and myth? Will you believe your own bible? Will you be willing to change when you find the truth? Do you know where the teaching of the Trinity came from? What about Christ-mass, or Easter? Check out our articles on these subjects and after looking into the facts we hope you will accept wisdom and truth instead of myth. Wisdom and truth can only begin with unlearning the errors we were taught and accepting the truth. The question is do you feel better just continuing to believe in the myths, or will you accept the truth?

Fpr more facts you might want to read some other articles titled:

The history of pentacles and pentagrams

Should Christians observe Christ-Mass?

Should Christians observe Easter

Should Christians pray to Mary?

The Trinity: Christian or Pagan?

The History of the Cross Symbol in Christianity

Could receiving the Eucharist Actually be Sun Worship?

Sun Worship in Christianity?