India is a land of numerous religions. With them comes a number of beliefs. Some of them though sound superstitious, they actually have a logical reason behind them. Time passed by and the reasons may have been long forgotten and we often find ourselves wondering about their origins. Here, we have some so-called superstitions which have a logical reasoning backing them up.
1. Cutting nails and shaving after sunset:
There’s a proper reason to why our grand ma asks s not to cut our nails after the sun sets. In the olden days when there was no electricity people tend to injure themselves during these tasks. That is how this superstition was originated.
2. Lemons and Mirchi:
Many stores, houses and even vehicles can be seen with lemons and mirchi hanging at the entrance. The fact is that the thread which holds the lemons absorbs the acidic nature of it and keeps the insects away.
3. Not going near Peepal tree at the night:
Though you must’ve heard that peepal tree is the home for ghosts and that’s why you shouldn’t go near it during the night time, the actual reason is that trees tend to emit carbon dioxide. And peepal tree emits large amounts of it. People who sleep near that may experience hallucinations and lack sleep due to this. That is the actual reason behind this.
4. Cats crossing the path:
In the ancient times, people used to travel in bullock carts with lanterns in their hands. When animals like cats or cheetahs crossed their way, their eyes used to glow because of the lanterns light. This usually scared the bulls and that’s how this superstition originated.
5. Tulsi leaves shouldn’t be chewed:
Generally tulsi leaves contain a little amount of Arsenic. And when its chewed, the arsenic can cause tooth decay. That’s the reason why our elders say that tulsi leaves should be swallowed and not chewed.
6. Not going out during eclipses:
Looking at sun during the eclipse can cause retinal burns or “eclipse blindness”. This is due to the harsh rays that are released during the eclipse. That’s why usually going out on eclipse is not preferred. Likewise, pregnant ladies are also requested to stay indoors during eclipse to prevent the exposure to harmful UV rays.
7. Taking bath after a funeral:
Usually this is something everyone, regardless of their religion, follows at home. This is originated from the fact that a certain bacteria is accumulated around the dead body and it might pass on to us. So that is the belief how taking bath after the funeral originated.
8. Throwing coins in the rivers:
In the olden days, coins are made of copper and bronze. These metals have the ability to purify water. And people in those days usually drank water directly from the rivers. So, people threw coins in the river so that the water can be purified and is used for drinking. Days passed by and this has become a traditional sentiment.
9. Lizard falling on humans:
Lizards are generally poisonous reptiles. And when they fall on people, a certain amount of chemical is released by them which causes skin infections and rashes. That is the reason why it is considered as a bad sign.
10. Menstruating women shouldn’t enter temples:
In the olden days when we didn’t have painkillers, menstruation is a tiring phase for any women. So, ‘this time’ is usually given as time for rest for the women. And that’s why they weren’t allowed to come out of their homes.
11. Saving the portion of umbilical cord:
The process of Jatakarma done after the child birth involves, burying of a portion of umbilical cord in a copper capsule or the fork of a tree branch. This is mentioned our age old vedas. Our ancestors probably knew the importance of stem cells, where as it was only discovered and the storage of stem cells started very recently in 1978.
12. Don’t sleep with head towards north:
Our ancestors are well aware of the earth’s magnetic field and our body’s natural bio-magnetism. They made the rule of sleeping towards south because the asymmetry with earth’s magnetic field may result in blood pressure and other related diseases.
All these beliefs are scientifically backed up in the right way. But the problem arises when the roots of them are forgotten. They held relevance at those times and lost it now, given to the change of culture and modernization. The problem arises when the belief is passed on and not the reason behind following it. Then they become superstitions. People without knowing the logical reason, tend to paint a negative light on all of these. So, if we know why they were being followed we can decide whether to still follow them or not. That way our respect on our culture can be understood and restored.
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