Sunday, September 7, 2008

Some Indian superstitions

India is considered as one of the most superstitious country because here many are ignorant, backward and believe in the power of omens. Ignorance leads to superstition. People want to achieve all their ambitions without putting the best efforts. They are interested in performing many ceremonies and follow the persons who tell them the impact of evil spirits, such people always live in a fear of ghosts and take each step of daily routine keeping in mind the superstition associated with it. Superstitions have indeed led the people to believe in the existence of supernatural beings.
Some superstitions are prevalent not only in India but also in many other countries. However, the number of superstitions is much higher in India. Actually there are so many common and small superstitions that at each place, there is a superstition existing. If one sneezes, it is not considered good to go out. It is considered an ill-luck if we see a man with an empty pitcher or if a cat crosses one’s way. All these are considered ill-omens and highly inauspicious. Seeing a one-eyed man early in the morning is considered so bad that people think that they won’t get any meals during the day. If an owl is seen sitting on top of house, it is taken as a sure sign of coming ruin and destruction to the family of that house. A guest is predicted if a crow starts crowing early in the morning at one’s rooftop.
Many superstitions are made for betterment based on their inherent advantages. Such superstitions have a solid reasoning and common sense behind their cause. It is said that the small babies should not be fed outside, under the open sky, their food should always be given in covered places. This is perhaps to avoid exposure of food to possible bacterial infection outside. The grown-up children or adults should not cross-over small babies. It is usually seen that biggen children try to cross the little children. But it is not considered a good sign, it is truly sure that such cross-overs can injure the little babies.
Superstitions also teach science in very common, popular and acceptable ways. Like plucking of a flower at night is considered a sin. Similarly, the peepal trees are considered abodes of ghosts at night. The wells which have been closed are considered as underground houses of evil spirits. This for betterment of people because a closed well can store various poisonous gases which if leaks can cause fatal injuries. Similarly some of other superstitions prevent us from doing such activities which can do harm in terms of scientific approach. Such superstitions can rightly be told to children for their safeguards.
Man is a social animal and is weak in his conscience. That is why he lives in fear of unknown dangers that may strike, due to presence of an evil-spirit or ghost in a lonely or dark corner. All superstitions are signs of human weakness, particularly with reference to sights of ghosts and evil-spirits. In broad daylight, no one has ever seen a ghost or gets afraid thinking a ghost is nearby. Actually we ourselves are causes of such unforeseen misfortunes and accidents. We keep all such happenings at the back of our minds and go on thinking whenever lonely or in the dark. We should come out of such ignorant superstitions and try to be in good humour for good of all.
The increase in awareness and education level can definitely remove most superstitions associated with various innocent and ignorant people of our country. Today, most of the educated youth do not pay any attention to such superstitions and treat it all as nonsense. But in some people, these superstitions are so deeply rooted that any kind of convincing would do nothing to remove their superstitious faiths. Even in some other countries the number thirteen is regarded as very inauspicious. People don’t like to be associated with this number. So we have superstitions not only in India but all over the world though in varying degrees.