Superstition can be defined as a credulous notion that does not have its basis in knowledge or reason. This word often has a pejorative connotation, referring to folk beliefs that are considered irrational. Because of that, some superstitions are also known as "old wives' tales". Superstitions are related to practices and beliefs that have to do with luck, spiritual creatures and prophecies. The etymology of the word "superstition" is to be found in the Latin "superstition", meaning "standing over in amazement".
Some of the superstitions were initially part of some religious practices, and people continued to observe them although they no longer believed in that specific religion. In this process, practices sometimes happened to lose their initial meaning. Or in other cases, the practices got adapted to the practitioner's religion.
There are many superstitions that still can follow us in our daily life. Thus, the very rare four-leaved clover is believed to bring good fortune, the same as the horseshoe.
There are mistakes which are said to bring bad luck, such as: stepping on a crack, walking under a ladder, breaking a mirror (in certain cultures though, this is considered to bring good luck). Although the truth about them has not yet been proven, psychologists say that observing superstitions can have the power to create a safe and calm environment for their practitioners.
Superstitions are quite revealing of people's fears, hopes and dreams. Like mostly all the other people in the world, Romanians too have plenty of interesting superstitions. Thus, one of them is related to the black cat crossing your path of course this supposedly means bad luck. In case this happens, you must take three steps forward and three steps backwards, and then you can keep walking on your way, free of the bad luck.
Another one is that if you sit on the ground or on concrete, you will become unable to have children.
When somebody's horse is sick, he can solve this with a bucketful of water. You must drop a lit match into the bucket and then give it to your family members, and each one of them needs to drink a glass of water. After that, you can give the water to your horse, and it must drink of it also.
If you spill salt, it means there's going to be trouble, there will be a fight. In order to prevent such quarrel, one should take a pinch of the spilled salt and throw it over one's shoulder.
Also, if you whistle inside one's home, you are likely to lose all your money.
Women generally love to study each other's jewels, and try them on. But in the Romanian tradition, it is considered bad luck for a married woman to hand her ring over to another one. The one thing she can do is to put the ring on the table and let the other person pick it up and take a closer look at it.
You should never give something to somebody else while standing on the threshold.
Putting bread upside down is also considered to be of bad luck.
When you start on a travel or a trip, you should never turn back in case you've forgotten something, because this is believed to bring you bad luck. The alternative is to look into a mirror and make a little funny face instead.
They say bouquets must also have an odd number of flowers. Thus, one must never give 2, 4, 6, and 8... etc., flowers to a person. The explanation for this is that even-flowers' bouquets are for cemeteries or funeral ceremonies.
When somebody praises a child, by saying that he/she is cute, adorable, and so on, that child must wear something red, or else the little poor thing might get some bad curses. If the child failed to wear anything red, a removal of spells and curses might be necessary. If your nose is itchy, it means you will participate in a party, at a festivity, at an occasion to drink, or you will get some news.
What is more, it is said that every Tuesday has three hours of bad luck and people should be aware of it.
Superstitions are ridiculous but when you lived with them I guess you find them normal like table manners. However, we need to keep in mind that we need to know why we believe what we believe and not just go with the flow in every useless idea.