Words by Gemma Casimsiman
From the day we’re born, we hear about superstitions. Wherever you go, precautions are to be taken as there are things you must or musn’t do.
As children, we would just go with it even though it made no sense. But if you think about it now, there are some superstitions that are—for a lack of better word—weird. The logic behind these superstitions are incomprehensible but why don’t we take a look and decide for ourselves, shall we?
12. Tabi-tabi po
When walking in areas that are empty or undisturbed, one should say “Tabi-tabi po” or excuse me. This is common courtesy to the creatures living in the area. If you don’t, they will inflict harm on you—usually prolonging a sickness or putting one in your system.
11. Pwera Usog
“Usog” is when a child suffers from sickness or distress after being greeted by a stranger, usually with an evil eye. This is prevented by saying “Pwera Usog” or putting the stranger’s saliva on the child. This superstition can be closely related to jinx.
10. Sweeping at Night
This is a popular superstition that every household follows. One should not be sweeping at night as to not sweep away the good luck. Aside from good luck, you’ll also be sweeping away the wealth that is bestowed upon the house.
9. Marrying at the Same Year
It is said that siblings being wed in the same year can cause bad luck to the family. It’ll cause rivalry between those two siblings and bring unwanted bad luck. Waiting a year or two is preferable. This is the superstition which the movie “Sukob” is based off of.
8. Last to Eat
A common superstition when eating is you’re not supposed to leave the table unless everyone is done. Why? Because whoever is left eating at the table will never get married. Make sure you’re not the last one, then!
7. Opening an Umbrella indoors
Elders have warned us not to open umbrellas indoors as it will give you bad luck. This can also symbolize you blocking the good luck by using the umbrella as a shield from it. Also, there’s no rain inside anyway!
During funerals, this is a common practice EVERY Filipino should follow (as warned by countless adults). Pagpag means stopping by someplace before heading straight home after going to a wake. This will prevent death from following you home as it confuses them about your route.
5. Don’t bring anything home from the Wake
Another common Filipino practice after visiting a wake or a funeral. By doing this, you are inviting the dead to follow you home. Other than such a weird superstition, it is common courtesy as the food is provided for the guests that are coming, not as a take out for you.
4. Oro, Plata, Mata
Gold, silver, death—these 3 words are used to count the number of steps upon construction. The steps should never end in the word Mata as it means death. To children, this may sometimes serve as a game to pass the time.
3. Knock on Wood
We all say bad jokes we don’t mean but there are consequences for such actions. There are times we wish to take it back or to prevent it from happening. The solution to this problem is the superstition telling you to knock on wood. By doing this, your “bad joke” won’t happen.
2. Itchy Palm
An itchy palm foresees your wealth. When you have the urge to scratch the palm of your hand, it means that money is coming your way. By this time, you should know not to sweep the house at night anytime soon–you might sweep away the money luck!
1. Pointing your index finger
It is a widespread belief that pointing your index finger at someone is considered rude. But, here in the Philippines, pointing your index finger at a tree will be seen as disrespecting the creatures who live there. Bite your finger to take back your action and avoid their revenge as well.
Did we miss anything? Don’t hesitate to comment down below!