“Rabbit, Rabbit, Rabbit” and other Superstitions

“Rabbit, Rabbit, Rabbit”: we’re supposed to say this before we say anything else on the first day of each month, or else…? What?

Good luck
image from http://www.azgamingguide.com

Where do your superstitious rituals, habits, beliefs come from? Your family? Your religion? Your heritage/culture? Your locality? Other “traditions”?

Sports players, gamblers, racers, stock market sellers and buyers and many others are notorious for their rituals that supposedly bring good luck or avoid bad luck. Watch a baseball game some time and notice all the tics, obsessive/compulsive, repetitive behaviors and rituals the players engage in, particularly the batters and pitchers.

What are the differences among “superstitions,” “faith-based rituals,” “religious beliefs,” and “traditions”?

Do you cross yourself or genuflect in some other way that is not part of a prayer ritual when entering a cemetery?

What about lifting your feet when you cross over railroad tracks?

Ever hold your breath while crossing a bridge or going through a tunnel?

Why do you “cross your fingers” for good luck or behind your back when you’re telling a lie?

crossing fingers
image from http://www.servantleadershipinstitute.com

Do you feel guilty, disloyal, unfaithful, heretical, afraid or nervous when you decry, pooh-pooh and/or refuse to adhere to superstitious or other rituals even when you are certain there is no basis in scientific or other fact to support continuing to believe or do those things?

Even when you know it’s silly—i.e., unfounded in anything rational—do you perform the ritual or continue to have the belief, anyway? Or, do you follow the ritual in front of believers, out of respect or not to “rock the boat,” but in private or among unbelievers, you do not follow it, and you might even disparage it and/or those who do follow it?

Do you believe that if you break or crack a mirror, you acquire 7 years of “bad luck,” unless you do or say… what…?

broken mirror
image from http://www.giftypedia.com

List some rituals, beliefs, and other behaviors associated with superstition with me (here are some of mine) and their purported effects or purposes:

  • Saying “Rabbit, rabbit, rabbit” on the first day of every month, as the first utterances (otherwise, it is “too late”):
    — to bring good luck to the speaker for the month.

  • When walking with someone and separated by a lamppost or other upright object or another person temporarily, saying “Bread and butter” as you part:
    — to avoid bad luck; to keep you “together” in the future.

  • When speaking, if I and another person(s) say the same exact words at the same exact time, one of three things must occur: 1) The first person to notice it says: “Jinx! You owe me a soda!” and the other(s) must “pay up” soon; 2) Both (or all three) people link pinkies and say “Jinx!” or 3) The first person to notice says “Jinx!” and the other person(s) may not speak again until someone says their first name aloud.
    — I have no idea why any of these occurs. Does anyone?

  • When anyone spills salt, throw some over my left shoulder.
    — to avoid bad luck.

    image from http://www.bristolfarms.com

  • When anyone says something nice about a person in my hearing, especially a baby, I must say “Kinahorah,” which is Yiddish, transliterated, and means:
    — “there should be no evil eye.”

  • When anyone says their age aloud in front of another (honestly or lying), especially in response to someone’s question, someone else or the questioner must say “Kinahorah.”
    — see above.

  • Put a new penny into any coin purse, purse or wallet before giving it as a gift.
    — Ensures the new owner will always “have enough.”

  • When someone, including myself, is traveling, especially in an airplane, I must imagine three “magic circles” or one “magic circle” three times surrounding the traveler and imagine that those circles extend to all who travel (best done on take-off, for an airplane I’m in).
    — to ensure safety while traveling.

  • When anyone spills a beverage or food, including drinking water, onto the table or floor or self, the spiller or someone else must say: “May we always have more than enough.”
    — to avoid not having enough that some could overflow without harm to the drinker/eater in the future.

  • When you or someone else loses an eyelash, put it on a finger and have the owner blow it away while making a wish.
    — to guarantee the wish will come true.

    eyelash wish
    image from http://www.babble.com

  • When sewing a button, tear or hem while still wearing the garment, sewer must put a piece of thread in one’s mouth while sewing.
    — to avoid “sewing one’s brains together.”

  • Don’t walk underneath a stepladder that is open or a straight ladder propped up against the wall.
    — to avoid bad luck.

    image from http://paperchipmunk.com

  • Don’t be first OR always strive to be first…in a line/queue, to step off the curb to cross the street, to speak in a group, to go through a revolving door, to get into a cab or hansom-type vehicle, to arrive at a public event/in an audience, to arrive at a party.
    — to ensure good luck or avoid bad luck.

  • When blowing out birthday candles, must make a wish before they’re all blown out and must blow them all out in one breath.
    — to guarantee the wish will come true.

  • When you see the first star on any night, say: “Star light, star bright, please grant my wish tonight,” then, make a wish silently.
    — to guarantee the wish will come true.

What other superstitions do you/have you subscribed to/been taught/ been around in your life? COMMENT HERE! Share! http://www.sallyember.com/blog