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Thread: Friday the 13th

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    SitePoint Addict jamesglewisf's Avatar
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    I just realized that today is Friday the 13th. Duh. That's the perfect day to release the new Winona Ryder movie "Lost Souls." Just before Halloween too.

    Does anybody know where the Friday the 13th superstition came from?
    Jim Lewis
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    @russellg RussellG's Avatar
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    Pagan times I think.

    For some reason my grandma and I always argue on Friday the 13th.
    russell.cz.cc - coming soon (I promise!)

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    Your Lord and Master, Foamy gold trophy Hierophant's Avatar
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    According to Dr. Michael Seth, professor of history at Phillips University in Enid, Okla., many of the superstitions modern western people hold dear, including the beliefs that 13 is an unlucky number, our human fates are tied to the patterns of the stars and black cats are evil, originated more than 5,000 years ago in the Middle East -- Mesopotamia in particular.
    "The fact that everything is sevens, 12s and 40s in the Old Testament, of course, is because those were considered good or lucky numbers in Mesopotamia," Seth said, "and so you see them over and over and over in the Bible."

    Because 13 came after lucky number 12, it was associated with evil. "There are a lot of legends going on about the twelve apostles of Christ, and that the 13th member at the last supper was bad," Seth said, "but these would be much later ideas, after the number 13 was already established as bad."

    In addition to retaining the belief of 13 as unlucky, Seth pointed out the belief in the lucky number seven holds, especially in games of chance. "Although these are really ancient Middle Eastern superstitions and beliefs, we still kind of like them," he said.
    There are many other beliefs about why the a Friday falling on the 13th day of a month is a bad omen. One person commented, "I have heard that the number 13 is unlucky because of the number of attendees of the last supper." Another rumor heard about this day of evil is that Friday the 13th is considered unlucky because of the combination of the day with the number: Friday is the Goddess' day, (Frida in Norse, Venus in Latin languages) and 13 is the number of the moon goddess (13 lunations in a solar year). When originally Saturday was the 7th day of the week (a day of rest) it was Saturn's day, who needed the rest after spending the previous day with the goddess. F

    Friday the 13th is also considered unlucky according to the book "Dungeon, Fire, and Sword" is that on that day, I forget the year, the King of France, I forget his name, put the last Grand Master of the Knights Templar, Jaques DeMolay, to the stake and burned him alive along with other Knights. The reason for the executions according to the King was because the Templars were secretly Satanists. In reality he was jealous of their wealth and power and had his Anti-Pope excommunicate them and condem them as heretics. The Knights Templar were the richest group in Europe at the time and were loved by most of the 'common' folk. As he was burning, DeMolay cursed the Pope and King of France to die within the year, which they both did. So that is the true reason that Friday the 13th is considered unlucky.

    Some people believe Friday the 13th is only bad luck for males. The calendars used to have 13 months for the 13 phases of the moon in a year. Men changed the calendar to 12 months. Women also generally have 13 cycles in a year. Friday is also ruled by Venus which represents women. These are just a few of the reasons the day is bad but whatever the real reason it may be.

    Here are some additions to the origins of superstitions and holidays:

    1. We cover our mouths when we yawn because it was believed that evil spirits could enter our bodies via our mouths.
    2. We say "God Bless You" when someone sneezes because it was believed that your soul could escape from your body during a sneeze, and saying "God Bless You" immediately after someone sneezed would stuff it back in.
    3. Since the actual date of the birth of Christ isn't known, the early Christians took the date of an existing holiday, the birth of Mithras, an ancient Persian sun-god. The date of December 25th is also meaningful because at the time of the Winter Solstice, when the daylight lessens, people thought that the world was ending...Thus, after a couple days or so, when the days began to lengthen, people celebrated. If you want to figure out the "actual" date of the birth of Christ from clues in the Bible (the sheep at pasture, the alignment of the stars in the sky, later clues of the age of Jesus) he was probably born in late summer or fall. When the cult of Christianity (The Romans)wanted to destroy all the earlier pagan religions that were flourishing, they adopted the days that were sacred to the other religions to keep the followers happy. Sidenote: The Evergreen tree is used as a symbol because its year-round green branches suggested everlasting life.
    4. Knocking on wood was supposed to keep the evil spirits that lived in the wood from coming out to spoil our good fortune.
    5. Walking under a ladder was bad luck because a ladder leaning against a wall formed a triangle and the Egyptians believed very strongly in the power of pyramids and triangles. To break the triangle was considered very dangerous. Sidenote: Sleeping with a pyramid over your head is supposed to either bring good (prophetic) dreams or is supposed to bring good luck.

    Friday is upon us, GOOD LUCK!!



    [Edited by W. Luke on 10-13-2000 at 02:02 PM]
    Wayne Luke
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    (Howling at the FULL MOON)

    My lucky day...

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    Your Lord and Master, Foamy gold trophy Hierophant's Avatar
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    Originally posted by RussellG
    Pagan times I think.

    For some reason my grandma and I always argue on Friday the 13th.
    The significance of the full moon is more important to Pagans than the fact that today is the 13th of the month and is on a Friday. Pagan Calendars have 13 months to correspond with the earth's rotation around the Sun not an arbitraty system of dates with uneven months decided upon for political reasons.
    Wayne Luke
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    It's my dad's birthday today, but he lives in East Sussex which is totally flooded so I can't go and visit him and take his birthday present....

    ....unlucky for him!


    Peter
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    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    I turned 10 years old on Friday the 13th...no party for me that year...creepy, huh?

    Days like this don't bother me - I think I'll have a pretty good day today. It's gotten to the point where the people I know just act all sarcastic over it: "Oooooohh, Friday the 13th! I hope I don't die today..."

    Ponder this, though: considering the law of averages, many people will *ACTUALLY* die today...

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    Don't get too close, I bite! Nicky's Avatar
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    I actually LIKE the number 13. I used to play International ladies hockey and the number on the back of my hockey shirt was 13!

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    Hi there! Owen's Avatar
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    Wow! That's fascinating. I always knew there was a reason for 13 to be bad luck. But I always though that covering your mouth after a yawn was to be polite.

    I know that Japanese and Germans also have unluck numbers, though they are not 13. In Japanese some number means death so hospitals don't have a floor w/ that number.

    Owen

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    Sports Publisher mjames's Avatar
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    Excellent post above, Wayne. Yup, today's Friday the 13th, and I've had a pretty good day.

    Let's hope my computer doesn't get struck by lightening or something tonight.

    Happy Friday everyone!

  11. #11
    Don't get too close, I bite! Nicky's Avatar
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    In Spain Friday the 13th does not mean anything, instead it is Tueday 13th. I don't know why though!

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    SitePoint Evangelist mad-onion's Avatar
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    Although i dont consider myself obsesively superstisious i think that Black Friday, and similar things, are a bit of fun.

    I actually backed up all my data before i went to bed on thursday just in case, and i looked twoce not once before crossing the road and that sort of thing.

    But it turned out to be quite a good day, maybe because i was being over cautious...lol

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    Kat's Meow Senior ******* WebKat's Avatar
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    My PC hasn't done it's daily crash, my mouse hasn't locked, my files are opening fast, downloads went without a hitch and the morning paper landed on the porch, not in the bushes...even considering that it is Friday 13th and that my feline family member Cleo is a black cat =^..^= with green eyes!

    But I walk under ladders, so Friday the 13th won't bother me a bit...
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    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    Check this out, it makes for an interesting read:
    http://encarta.msn.com/column/fridaythe13th.asp


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    Skills to Pay the Bills Sparkie's Avatar
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    This is strange..

    My father works with a fellow who is unbelievably paranoid about Friday the 13th, and the number 13 in general. If he has to go to the 13th floor of the building, he'll stop the elevator at 12 and walk up. If he's on the 14th floor and gets called down, he'll walk to the 13th. Unbelievable, the precautions people take. He was especially tense yesterday, and avoided the 13th floor alltogether

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    Sports Publisher mjames's Avatar
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    Such a big deal that nearly $1 billion worth of commerce won't happen, because people are afraid to fly, travel, and shop.
    Wow, and who says Americans aren't supersticious?


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