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List of superstitions in India

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Title: List of superstitions in India  
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List of superstitions in India

The following are the common superstitions of India.


Contents

  • Astrology 1
  • Animals 2
  • Luck and auspiciousness 3
  • Ghosts and other supernatural beings 4
  • Witchcraft 5
  • Sexuality and reproduction 6
  • See also 7
  • References 8
  • Further reading 9

Astrology

  • Rahukaalam (or Rahu kala) is an inauspicious period of time every day.[1]
  • A person born under the influence of Mars is called a manglik or having Mangal Dosha. People avoid marrying such a person, especially if the person is a woman. Marriage with such a person is believed to cause marital discord and divorce, even sometimes death. However, it is believed that if two mangliks marry, the effects of both cancel out.[2][3]

Animals

  • It is believed that snakes can drink milk. During the festival of Nag Panchami, snakes are captured and force-fed milk. As a result, several thousand snakes die annually.[4][5]
  • To see a peacock before a journey is considered auspicious.[6]
  • People believe that lizards are poisonous while in fact they have no poison.
  • If a lizard falls on body, people take a bath.
  • In some parts it is believed that if 3 lizards come towards you, it is sign of marriage but if 4 or more lizards come towards you, it is a sign of upcoming death.[7]
  • If a black cat crosses your way, it is treated to be very bad day. It may harm your work, health and wealth.[8]

Luck and auspiciousness

  • Adding one rupee to a gift sum is auspicious, i.e., sums like 21 or 101 rupees are considered more auspicious than say 20 or 100.[9][10]
  • There are several methods of warding of an "evil eye". Lemon-and-chilli totems are a common method.[11] Mothers put kohl on their babies' face, to ward off evil eye, by making it imperfect.[12]
  • In some parts of India, it is considered inauspicious to sweep the floor at night.[13]
  • Widows are considered inauspicious in many parts of India.[14]
  • Saturdays are considered very inauspicious, as it is associated with the god Shani (Saturn).[15]
  • It is believed that looking in a broken mirror may bring bad luck.[16]
  • People don't have a shave, haircut or cut their nails on Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday believing that it is bad luck.[17]
  • Plucking flowers or leaves at night is considered bad luck.

Ghosts and other supernatural beings

  • Peepul trees are believed to be the abode of ghosts and they are avoided at night.[18] Banyan trees are also believed to be inhabited by malevolent spirits.[19]

Witchcraft

  • Belief in witches is common in some parts of India. Witches are believed to capable of killing cattle and humans, destroying crops and causing illness. Witch-hunts have been known to happen.[21]
  • In parts of Jharkhand, it is believed that if the name of a witch is written on a branch of a Sal tree, the branch would wither away.[21]

Sexuality and reproduction

  • Dhat syndrome is culture bound syndrome where the sufferer believes he is losing dhat or semen in urine.[24]

See also

References

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  21. ^ a b
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  24. ^

Further reading

  • Abbott, John (1932). The Keys of Power: A Study of Indian Ritual and Belief. Taylor & Francis. 560 pages.
  • Oman, John Campbell (1908). Cults, Customs and Superstitions of India.
  • Russell, R.V. (1916). The Tribes and Castes of the Central Provinces of India (four vols.). London.
  • Thurston, Edgar, C.I.E. (1912). Omens and Superstitions of Southern India.
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