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My grandmother comes from an Eastern European culture which had ridiculous number of superstitions and I wondered whether maybe it ws just her or do many cultures have these. Do you know how superstitions came about?

asked 24 Feb '10, 23:59

TheSevenMan's gravatar image


My sister always thought it was bad luck to get out of bed if the clock radio was on an odd time, like 6:51am or 7:03am. So she would wait the minute to get out of bed when the number was even. I have no idea where this came from!


answered 25 Feb '10, 00:07

NP74's gravatar image


I've gotta say that is weird!

(25 Feb '10, 00:08) TheSevenMan

My sister always had to turn the light on and off 2 or 3 times before going to bed - more ocd than superstition.

(25 Feb '10, 03:23) Michaela

My Grandparents were from Russia, and although they weren't religious, they were extremely superstitious, as were all my extended family members from that side of the family.

They were the opposite of NP74's sister in that they would only set alarms for odd-numbered times, and as another example would only purchase flowers or vegetables in odd-numbers. They knocked on wood a lot, and they also had the belief that sitting on the ground would make one infertile.

But the oddest belief of all, in my opinion was that of "the evil eye". It seemed that all of their Russian family and friends had this belief and I heard it discussed quite often. It was bad luck to show a new baby to anyone until it was several weeks old. They really believed that strangers could steal the baby's soul by looking into its eyes, and closely guarded new babies from the gaze of even neighbors or friends. It was also bad luck to receive any compliments about the baby. If one gave a compliment, it was assumed that they admired the baby and wanted its soul. After about the 6th of 7th week, then they would show off the baby!


answered 25 Feb '10, 03:05

LeeAnn%201's gravatar image

LeeAnn 1

hahahaha. lee ann, your not alone, we middle eastern people also have that same DUMB stuperstition, the EVIL EYE AHHA!! and to go in into more further detail you can buy that little "blue eye" wich protects people from the "evil eye"_" talk about STUPIDITY LOL!! man our culture has SO MANY little stupid superstitions like that its unbelievable! makes me laugh the way these people think LOL!! peace

(25 Feb '10, 07:19) Mebb

In computer programming, we have a term we call "Cargo Cult Programming." It refers to the kind of programming where a programmer blindly follows a prescribed pattern of development, without really understanding how it works.

The term "Cargo Cult" comes from a religious practice that occurs in primitive societies when advanced civilizations bring them food and other supplies in magical vehicles like airplanes, and then leave. In order to attract more goodies, the primitive tribes will often mimic the conditions they saw when the airplanes appeared. (Think "airplane dance" instead of "rain dance").

Cargo cult activity in the Pacific region increased significantly during and immediately after World War II, when large amounts of manpower and materials were brought in by the Japanese and American combatants. When the war ended, the military bases were closed and the flow of goods and materials ceased. In an attempt to attract further deliveries of goods, followers of the cults engaged in ritualistic practices such as building crude imitation landing strips, aircraft and radio equipment, and mimicking the behaviour that they had observed of the military personnel operating them.

Cult behaviors usually involved mimicking the day to day activities and dress styles of US soldiers, such as performing parade ground drills with wooden or salvaged rifles. They carved headphones from wood and wore them while sitting in fabricated control towers. They waved the landing signals while standing on the runways. They lit signal fires and torches to light up runways and lighthouses. In a form of sympathetic magic, many built life-size replicas of airplanes out of straw and created new military-style landing strips, hoping to attract more airplanes.


answered 25 Feb '10, 05:24

Vesuvius's gravatar image


edited 25 Feb '10, 05:32

How about a current conception that could be considered a superstition. If you dream that you get killed in your dream that the body doesn't know from dream state to real state and that you actually do die from the trauma.


answered 25 Feb '10, 01:10

RPuls's gravatar image


Let me release you from this fear. It doesn't happen. If that were true, I should be dead. Without going into details, I have died in my dreams (in the past, not now) and I always woke up. I was frightened but very much alive.

(25 Feb '10, 05:19) The Traveller

That is not true I have died plenty of ways and times in my dreams once shot clean through with a shot gun, another time a machine gun another time my throat cut, another time fell from the sky thousands of feet and slammed into the ground, another time thrown into a grinding machine like a human juicer I guess! lol

(25 Feb '10, 06:21) Wade Casaldi

Sometimes I woke up sometimes my mind continued the dream either after life or somehow switching the dream to something new.

(25 Feb '10, 06:25) Wade Casaldi

I dont't believe you die either. My dream was like Wade's. I became lucid and continued dreaming. It's funny how rumours can become beliefs for those who are gullible.

(25 Feb '10, 07:05) RPuls
showing 2 of 4 show 2 more comments

In Ireland, being brought up Catholic, it was unlucky to take a newborn baby out before it was christened so the christening was always done within the first couple of weeks. On New Years at exactly 12.00am my uncle always came in the front door with salt and a piece of coal.I know there's lots of old wives tales that I'm not recalling right now - if I remember I'll add them later.


answered 25 Feb '10, 03:20

Michaela's gravatar image


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