Dear Editor,The man started to believe in superstitions when he got a feeling that humans are at the mercy of natural elements. Similarly, some superstitions were also created because of social values. As a result, people worship forces of nature for a long time. The Greeks and Pagans used to worship elements of nature in the form of Gods and Goddesses. Same is the case with Indian traditions. Here in India, people continue to worship the sun, moon, stars, planets, plants and believing these things have the power to influence our lives. You might have heard ‘it is because of the impact of some evil star’ and more when a disease overtakes or disaster strikes. One might have noticed that many people believe in numerology, Tarrot reading, palm reading etc., They perform Hawans and Yagayas to make their stars, ruling planets Happy. In fact, since a long time, people still consider the number 13 to be unlucky. Similarly, salt spilling over the dinner table is also considered as an ill-omen. In India, people consider the black cat crossing the way as unlucky. Similar is the case of an owl hooting or a dog wailing. India has a long history of superstitions. There are many superstitions which people in this country follow. When someone sneezes during the time of departure, people consider it unlucky. Similarly, when you hear long mewing of a cat, people consider it a bad omen. Alternatively, offering curd before the start of any journey is auspicious. A group which follows superstitions a lot are students appearing for an examination. Weeks before exams, studnets start visiting temples. Some of the students also get a taveez with a lucky stone to help them in exams. Further, some students place their stationery for the exam in prayer room. Most common superstitions include not cutting nails at night, not using the broom after sunset, not opening the scissors without cutting anything, not looking at oneself in a broken mirror and many more. There are number of such beliefs that we still believe in.If we look at it closely, there is no logic as such behind the beliefs in superstitions. However, they have grown age-old and despite all the scientific advancement, they are not going anywhere soon. I am not against these beliefs but I am against the superstitions that torture humans on the name of God and planets. If a female is not having child it is believed that she might have some evil shadow and is treated badly. It is the ill-effect of superstition and we need to overcome this attitude.For most people, superstitions are harmless, but there are times when superstitions can become an obstacle in your everyday life. People who have other mental health conditions, such as generalised anxiety disorder, can also be negatively impacted by superstitions. People start believing that they are under the influence of evil-spirits and treat such people badly and instead of providing them with the medical treatment they require, people start treating them badly and harshly. We all need to understand the science behind superstitions and boycott all such malpractices which are a black spot on the society.Suman Gupta,Trikuta Nagar.
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