Despite all this education (of international standard, thanks to the internet) I am still someone who follows certain superstitions in life. For example, I don’t cut my hair or shave on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. And, my heart always sinks a little whenever a cat crosses my path. It happens way too many times in Manipal, and there are times when I can’t help but move ahead regardless.

One of my most favorite mental exercises though, is to find how a superstition must have been formed, and become a cultural phenomenon. Some are chance based. For example, a man must have realised that the three times a cat crossed his road, were the only three times that the work he had set out to do remained incomplete. Believing it to be some cosmic truth, he might have advertised it with a heavy dose of conviction and charisma. Some superstitions are philosophy based and sometimes even lead to a desirable change in the society. For example, a leaking tap or domestic violence leads to loss of wealth. Some are not even superstitions but based on proper biological science. Like not eating certain things after meals. (I make it a point to never follow these science based superstitions.)

Some of them are so very ingeniously conceived, that understanding them is difficult and you need experts in order to just follow it. For example Vaastu Shastra, according to its Wikipedia definition is born out of “a traditional view on how the laws of nature affect human dwellings.” That it is still accepted in this scientific world is testimony that it might even work to an extent.

I am not saying that everyone should restrict their life using these superstitions. After all, the purpose of them is reassure and comfort rather than cause any trouble for you.   If one does not follow it, then it’s good for them. I personally consider it a handy tool in order to exist in this neurotic society.

Advertisements