If you live in India, you would have definitely lost count of how many times you wanted to scream at you mom, ‘Mom! A black cat crossing the path just means that the animal is going somewhere and nothing else!’ or that it did not matter if it was a Tuesday or a Saturday, you just need to get your nails cut!
This country is quite famous as the most diverse country in the world. Nobody listens to anybody, they have their own views on everything. Every cultural, religious, racist, feminist, sexist and hundred other groups and their types, all have a million things to argue about. They never seem to agree on anything except for one, and no we are not talking about sex and its moral grounds because- ‘Good God, don’t open that door’. We are talking about not getting a haircut on Tuesday, not eating non-veg on a Thursday, not sweeping the floor in the evening, not sleeping with your head towards the north, and other such ridiculously famous beliefs that are so prevalent in the society.
Like religious rituals weren’t enough to make a fool out of people, some eternally bored person came up with “Oh you know what might help, If you crawl down to the mandir on your hands and knees”. Some of these superstitions are so irrational that it is almost annoying to see people; educated others on following them. What is the connection between a flipped slipper and bad luck? Or saying ‘touch wood’ after saying something horrible? It’s not like saying touch wood would actually prevent someone from dying. If that was the case, our national motto would’ve been changed from ‘truth alone triumphs’ to ‘touch wood’.
Another famously followed practice is that of tying ‘chilies and lemon’ outside houses, in vehicles, outside shops and almost every random place. It is believed that tying ‘chilies and lemon’ prevents spirits that bring bad luck from entering that place. People believe it and other such superstitions because they think it would make a difference in their life. As far as the writer is concerned the only difference this superstition has made is inspiring the ‘chilly limon’ flavour of lays and nothing else.
While talking of superstitions, one simply cannot talk about the concept of ‘Nazar Utarna’. It is basically cursing every person who ever complimented you because their compliment jinxed your success. It involves a two-step process. Step one is your ‘dadi’ or ‘mausi’ or ‘bua’ or any such relative senses the ‘buri nazar’ and step two involves wasting food items like chilies or salt or putting a black spot on the forehead (which is ironic considering how later they claim that our actions put a black spot on their family name, and we cannot even defend ourselves saying we were just protecting the family from buri nazar).
While mass media is supposed to be a means of spreading awareness, many of these superstitions are being spread because of irrelevant television content. The idea of ‘apshagun‘ from the daily soaps has given a re-birth to so many archaic superstitions. The premise of the flickering of the diya (with dramatic background music) or the flower dropping down form the idol of the deity as a sign of approval, or twitching of the right or left eye, or shoulder or God knows what part of the body, and their varied meanings have all played part in contributing to the already overflowing stream of superstitious beliefs and practices.
It is true that a person has the rights to belief in whatsoever that they like to belief and we are not against any of those beliefs. All we are against is how these beliefs are used as a tool to influence people. The writer is sure every person who is reading this article has heard about Nirmal Baba, who gave irrelevant solutions to mundane problems of people. How does the colour of the underwear you wear even remotely related to your financial stability? Such people reinforce superstition and then use it to control people.
All that is needed is for people to realize how incredibly gullible they are. They should try to put an end to believing in any such stupidity. The reason being, in this age of advancement if we still have to consult a pandit to find the muhurat to launch a rocket to Mars, decide the colour of the underwear the astronauts should wear to make the mission successful, and to even go to the extent of delaying the launch if someone sneezed just before the launch; we don’t think that such an advancement is anything more than a farce in the face of development.
About the Author:
Poet by heart; realist by mind
Curious to the core
I’m weirdness redefined.