Friday, November 13, 2009

The Unlucky Friday the 13th.

     Why is a Friday that is the 13th of any month so unlucky? I went and did my homework and found out a lot.
     Anyone who seriously suffers from the fear of Friday the 13th is suffering from paraskevidekatriaphobia. I'm glad that I wasn't asked to spell the word in any spelling bee. LOL It's a combination of three Greek words: Paraskevi meaning Friday, dekatreis  meaning thirteen and phobia meaning fear. There are approximately 80 million people who suffers from this. They refuse to go to work, drive or do anything on this day.  Some buildings, hotels or offices, whose floors goes past this number will skip this floor. There is no 13th floor. A lot of hospitals skips numbering a 13th room.
     Where did this fear come from?  It's not really as old as you would think.
    To many of the pre-Christian cultures the number 13 was lucky. The ancient Egyptians believed that life is part of a individual's spiritual ascension in 12 stages and the 13th stage being 'death'. They saw death as a glorious transformation for the individual not an ending of life.
     As with everything else that had to do with the ol' religion, Christianity tried to degraded the number 13 and Friday itself.
     One of many lies that they spread was one about Frigga or Freya, a Norse Goddess who was a free spirited love goddess. A goddess of love, marriage and destiny. The wife to Oden. When the Germanic tribes converted to Christianity, Frigga was banished in shame to a mountain top and then labeled as a witch. Imagine that!  It was there that her and eleven more witches, plus the Devil would meet and plotted ill deeds of fate against mankind especially the Christians. Therefore we had the number of people in one gathering being 13. Since the last supper of Jesus Christ and his diciples had 13 members at one table and the 13th guest was Judas who betrayed Jesus then the number 13 was unlucky and evil. Friday being named after Frigga / Freya, a witch then Friday had to be unholy itself.
     The connection between the superstition of Friday the 13th and the Knights Templars is a more recent popular belief due to the book and movie, The Da Vinci Code written by Dan Brown. The Knight Templars was knights who protected pilgrims on their way to the Holy Land. These knights became very wealthy over time. In-fact some say they invented the banking system. Anyhow, King Phillip became jealous and envious of their wealth and power decided they were worshippers of Baphomet ( a Christian version of the Devil ) and had them excecuted on Friday, October 13, 1307.
     The Battle of Hastings has a connection to the superstition as well. Friday, 13th of October 1066, King Harold II decided to go to battle on Saturday the 14th. His soldiers were very tired, weary and worn because they had traveled from a battle near York, three weeks earlier. King Harold would not let them rest before they battled again, therefore the English lost and King Harold II was killed.
     To many pagans and heathens Friday was a holy day, a sabbath day. It was a day of worship and rest. Well, the Christians decided since Sunday was their sabbath and Friday was the sabbath of the heathens, then the day had no place for the Christians, so they announced it to be the Witches' Sabbath.
     Here is a list of ways they degraded the day.
     - The Crucifixion of Jesus took place on a Friday.
     - It was a Friday that Eve tempted Adam with the forbidden fruit which ended up with them getting banished from the Garden of Eden.
     - The Great Flood began on a Friday.
     - The confusion at the Tower of Babel was on a Friday.
     - The Temple of Solomn was destroyed on a Friday.

     Here is another list of superstitions in connection with Friday and the number 13.
     - If 13 people all sit down at a table together at once, they will all die within the year.
     - Don't name your children with names that have 13 letters.
     - The British Navy named a ship Friday the 13th. It left the dock on a Friday 13th and never was seen again.
     - A baker dozen consist of 13 loaves. The 13th loaf was for the devil as an offering so he wouldn't spoil the other 12 loaves.
     - President Franklin D. Roosevelt would not travel on the 13th day of any month nor would he have 13 guests at any one meal.
     - Apollo 13 launched at 13:13 CST on 4/11/70. The numerology adds up to 13. The explosion happened on April 13th.
     - The first person to die in a car accident was killed in New York City on September 13, 1897.

     So there you go a little history on the date of Friday the 13th. To some it's a very unlucky day and to some it's a lucky day. I know that when anything bad happens on this date when we realize the date, most of us says,"Oh! It's Friday the 13th."  I didn't even know what day it was until late this evening. So have a......

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