Life is a teacher. The more you live, the more you learn from it. Life has its own way of teaching us some of the most important lessons we never learned in class. We meet new people, some leave and some stay but whatever happens, happens for our own good. I have met many different people in the 21 years of my existence. Each one had something to say. Some gave me valuable advice and insights while the others inspired me to write this article. I live in a country which is a plethora of different cultures, languages and religions. Everyone has their own beliefs. As ridiculous as they may seem, we can’t be sure if they are made-up or true. Here are 10 unbelievable things people say.
1. If you are a young woman with long hair, never leave it open and venture out at night.
What they say: Superstitions prevail in India in spite of all the modernization. Most of them are harmless like this one. Elders believe that it is unsafe for a young woman to venture out at night with her hair left open.
Reason: Young girls are vulnerable to being possessed by evil spirits. These are the spirits of young men and women with unfulfilled desired. They couldn’t complete what they started and look for young souls to possess so that they can carry on with their mission. Indians have a fondness for long black hair. May be that’s why they added the ‘hair left open’ criteria here.
The Truth: I’ve been out at night with my hair open and fortunately I’ve never had any bad experience. Spirits can target anyone and the length of your hair doesn’t matter (obviously!).
2. A pregnant woman is a spirit-magnet.
What they say: Indian people can give you some of the best advice whether you want it or not. Folks believe that a pregnant woman (including the first week after delivery) attracts evil spirits. The woman might have never seen the spirit before but when she is pregnant, the spirit manifests itself in front of her.
Reason: Spirits might be attracted to the nursing mother or her unborn child. This even applies to a woman who is in the first week post delivery.
The Truth: I didn’t believe this until my aunt (a trusted source) recollected one of her childhood experiences. This story was about her late mother who was at that time in the first week post delivery. One night her mother was sitting at the door and noticed a hen running around. She followed the hen to the terrace and what she saw left her speechless. She kept falling ill after that incident. She said she was being followed by the same woman she saw on the terrace. She lived in fear and the illness had taken a toll on her. She eventually passed away after 2 years.
Some say that pregnant women experience heightened senses due to which they notice every minute thing happening around them.
3. If you look in the mirror at 12 am on Valentine’s Day, you will see your future husband/wife.
What they say: My grandmother told me this when I was a kid. I was very curious to know who my future husband would be but I was scared to look in the mirror at 12. She told me that there was a man who was working late once. He happened to look in the mirror and seen a squint woman instead of his own reflection. It was 14th February 12 am midnight (He didn’t know that). Years later he married the same squint woman he had seen in the mirror.
Reason: It’s Valentine’s Day! Who doesn’t want to know about his future bride/bridegroom?
The Truth: I am sure this is not true. This is one of the silliest things I’ve ever heard.
4. Keep your left palm on the right side of your chest and sleep at night. You will have an Out-of-Body-Experience (OBE)
What they say: I read this on a website www.yourghoststories.com where users share their true experiences. There was a woman who claimed that her husband has had many out-of-body-experiences using this method. It is also called Astral Body Projection wherein the astral body leaves the physical body and is free to travel around. A person performing this can see his physical body in a state of rest. According to the method, you need to sleep with your left palm on the right side of your chest.
Reason: The woman did not state any reason. I wonder how true this is. I have never tried because I find astral projection risky. What if I am unable to enter my body? What if I get stuck in the astral plane? I guess I’ll never know.
The Truth: Astral Projection is very real but this method of performing it is highly doubtful. I might try astral projection when I have mustered up enough courage. It is supposed to be safe because the astral body is tied to the physical body by an invisible cord called the silver cord.
5. If you have a broad forehead, you will become rich.
What they say: Some people say that a person with a broad forehead is very lucky. He or she is most likely to become rich and live a luxurious life.
Reason: Someone with a broad forehead must have written this.
The Truth: This is completely false. Not everyone with a broad forehead is lucky or rich.
6. If you have a dimple, you are extremely lucky.
What they say: They say exactly what the title mentions, ‘If you have a dimple, you are extremely lucky’. This applies to people with just one dimple on either cheek.
Reason: The world is obsessed with dimples. Women undergo surgeries in order to achieve beautiful dimples like Cheryl Cole.
The Truth: This is so not true. The only thing I believe is that if you have a dimple, you instantly qualify as cute.
7. If you put your blood on a snake’s forehead, the snake becomes your protector.
What they say: Many years back I spent my holidays at a family friends’ place. It was like a village, not very modern. We were talking about snakes and how they enter people’s houses. That’s when I came face to face with this apparently true fact.
Reason: Snakes are worshiped in India (Google Lord Shiva). They are considered sacred.
The Truth: No one in my knowledge has ever tried this, The person who told me this had no true story to back this up. Hence, I don’t believe it.
8. Lucky is the one who witnesses a eunuch’s funeral.
What they say: If you are fortunate to witness a eunuch’s funeral, you will be blessed with riches. The Eunuch community in India keep their affairs private. Their funeral processions happen during the wee hours when the streets are empty.
Reason: The Eunuch Community in India is intriguing to many.
The Truth: My dad witnessed their funeral when he was very young. The dead body was made to sit on a chair and was carried by other eunuchs in a procession. If this belief was true I wouldn’t be sitting her blogging about random things. I would be out shopping and enjoying life like a spoiled brat (just kidding!).
9. If you possess strands of a witch’s hair, she will become your slave for life.
What they say: In India, a witch is called a chudail or daayan. Her power lies in her hair. A person who possesses strands of her hair can make her do anything for him. She becomes his slave for life until she gets hold of those strands (danger!).
Reason: There are many stories about chudails and daayans. I wish I knew from where this belief originated.
The Truth: I have heard many stories about people who have made witches their slaves with a few strands of hair as leverage. The best way is to sew the strands into your skin or hide it somewhere she will never find it. The witch will constantly beg you to reveal the hiding place but you need to be strong.
10. A Pair of Cobras knows as Icchadhaari Naag and Naagin can transform themselves into human beings whenever they want to.
What they say: Icchadhaari is the Hindi word which means ‘transforming according to will’. Naag and Naagin means a pair of cobras, one male and the other female. People in India believe than an Icchadhaari Naag and Naagin are blessed by Lord Shiva. They can switch between snake and human form at their own free will.
Reason: Snakes are considered sacred in India.
The Truth: No one has ever seen cobras change into human beings. Just like mermaids, leprechauns and fairies, the Icchadhaari Nag and Naagin tale is a piece of fiction.
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Image Credit: Desmond Lobo