Science

Scientific Reasons behind a Few Famous Superstitions (Part II)

Superstitions are prevalent across the globe, more so in India. But there are some practices, labeled as superstitions that actually have scientific reasons behind them. Continuing from the first part of the story, here are a few more scientific reasons behind some superstitions.

Don’t Go Out During An Eclipse 

Our elders advise us to not go out during an eclipse as it brings a bad omen but there is a solid scientific reason why we shall avoid going out during an eclipse. 

It’s said that going out during an eclipse should be avoided as it brings a bad omen to us. It’s quite prevalent mostly among Hindus because according to Hinduism, an eclipse happens because the sun is hidden by two Rakshasas (Rahu and Ketu) and one should avoid going out during an eclipse as Rahu and Ketu are infamous for bringing bad luck. While it’s scientifically proved that one should avoid going out during an eclipse or look at the sun directly but it’s not because of some bad omen but because eclipse can cause eclipse blindness or retinal burns.

One Should Not Sleep Facing the North

From ancient times in India, it’s advised that one should not sleep while keeping his head towards the north.  

In India, most of the people even today avoid sleeping while facing the north without knowing the logic behind it and they do so because they are told so and it’s a practice all follow. Various reasons are given which slowly became superstitions but in reality, it’s because to avoid unsafe effects related to blood pressure and other diseases that asymmetry with the Earth’s magnetic field may create.

Women are Prohibited to do Certain Things During Menstruation.

In India, women are supposed to avoid a few things while menstruating and it’s followed by many, especially in villages. 

In India, women are not allowed to do certain things and go to temples during menstruation. Feminists today cry foul-play and take it as a sign of gender inequality but there are scientific and other reasons behind it. In earlier times when sanitary pads were not practiced, women used old clothes during menstruation which are not totally leak-proof and if a woman goes to a temple during her periods, there are chances of some leakage and making the place unhygienic and women are prohibited to do certain things including cooking as they go through menstruation cramps that cause severe pain and it’s better to take rest during this period.  

Avoid Cutting Nails after its Dark

The famous superstition about avoiding cutting nails after its dark and it had a good reason behind it but makes no sense today.

In India and a few other countries with ancient civilizations, it’s advised that one should not cut his nails after its dark as it brings a bad omen. Cutting nails during the night obviously has nothing to do with a bad omen but it was advised because there was no electricity in older times and there are chances that one may cut his fingers while cutting nails or nails may fall in things like food etc as there is not enough light to see them perfectly. Today where there is electricity, one can cut nails whenever he wants but since it became a norm, many people still avoid cutting nails after its dark.

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