Superstition: Pick it Up for Good Luck

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January 23, 2012 by Thomas McGregor

The past four days have been have epic for me in the superstition realm. For I have picked up four heads-up pennies that I have found laying on the ground, throughout each four consecutive days. In the interest of education and exploration, I wanted to explore this superstition and the roots from which it stems from.

 

We jump into a time machine and find ourselves in the middle ages. The time for which kings battled of kindoms and knights fought over maidens. During this period of time precious metals were regarded as valuable beyond measure. Nobleman and towns people would die in order save their precious metals, regardless of metal substance. Through these actions, metals derived superstitions and beliefs that were losly based on the idea that the shinny metals were given to the people on Earth by the Gods. Copper was believed to have the power of the Greek God Venus for which gave power to the holder against evil and the attraction of good(or Love). So, forthwith from this blossomed traditions and ritualistic practices involving the metal Copper. The symbolistic power that Copper seemed to enable in its owners was contagious. So you might imagine how stable these ideals were in the transmitting of the symbolic traditions descending through generations.

As we expand, we can see how special metals play a roll in today’s societal events. The stringing of cans behind the newly wedded couple simbolizes the stability of wealth through the rocky or bumpy times that may accure throughout their marriage. The old saying, “Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue and a silver sixpence in your shoe.” is a direct link to having good luck and fortune throughout a new marriage. We even still, to this day wear charm bracelets, hang the horseshoe over the door, or cary special objects that sometimes are coins themselves.

 

In conclusion we come to find out that this may be superstition, tradition, or a set of beliefs – like a religion. But something is completely clear in this research; that we give value to something that inherently has zero value to start with. For copper was rare and hard to find in the middle ages, just like gold is today. Today, we give gold its value based on its immediate availability, or lack thereof. So it seems that the more raer a metal, situation, or object is, the more value we give it. In this we wrap superstitions and/or beliefs around the idea that these things will bring us out the trouble we think we are in. We, end up relying on these(seemingly price – less) objects to make us seem happier or in a better situation than we were before. In this line of thinking, I could presumably place the same amount of “luck” on my favorite drinking glass as I could imply on a head-up penny that I found on the ground. The difference? Sometimes its more fun to falsely delude ourselves into the belief of a long standing superstition, than to wake up from our dream and take a sip from our lucky glass.

 

By: Thomas McGregor

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