Moscow: Friday the 13th fear from antiquity




Last Friday, someone took a chance to get out of bed. Others are put off air travel, real estate purchase or transaction on the exchange. And why not? Because it was Friday the 13th. By some estimates, only in the U.S. for one such day economy suffers a loss of $ 800-900 million — due to canceled flights and imperfect things. Fear of Friday the 13th in the U.S. suffer from 17 to 21 million people. Symptoms can vary, from mid to large-scale panic anxiety, which can cause people to completely change their schedule — or even to refuse to work on that day.

Richard Wiseman of the University of Herefordshire (UK) found that approximately one third of the respondents named in the last year (2068 people on a representative sample) associate the number 13 with failures. Such people, he showed, are more likely to be afraid of Friday the 13th, and therefore more prone to accidents.

Donald Dossey, founder of the Stress Management Center and the Institute of phobias (USA), a psychologist and expert on folklore, believes that the fear of Friday the thirteenth is associated with the ancient, not related to each other negative associations with the number 13 and the fifth day of the week. Then these two phobias connected with each other, creating a sverhnevezuchy day.

Dossey traces the fear of the 13th of Scandinavian myth about 12 gods feasting on Valhalla. They were joined by the 13th uninvited guest — a malevolent Loki. Once at the feast, Loki made it so that the blind god of darkness, Hoder shot Balder the Beautiful, the god of joy, with the tip of an arrow of mistletoe. Balder died and the whole Earth got dark. It was a poor, miserable day. Since then, the number 13 is considered to be ominous. Number 13 as unfortunate, is mentioned in the Bible. So, Judas was the thirteenth at the Last Supper. In ancient Rome, witches gathered in groups of 12. It was believed that the 13th is the devil.

Thomas Fernsler, a mathematician at the University of Delaware, believes that the negative image of the number 13 is connected with his position after 12. It is believed that numerology perfect number 12. In the 12 months of the year, there are 12 signs of the zodiac, 12 gods of Olympus, 12 labors of Hercules, 12 tribes of Israel and 12 disciples of Christ. 13 becomes a symbol of bad luck, because it violates perfection.

And today, the fear of 13 is not weakened. According to Dossey, nearly 80% of apartment buildings in the United States there is no thirteenth floor. Many airports no 13th gate. And in hospitals and hotels often do not have thirteenth chamber or room.

Florence streets house situated between 12 and 14, the 12 1/2. Finally, an example is triskaidekafobii cosmic scale — unsuccessful mission to the moon Apollo 13. Many Christians believe that Jesus was crucified is the 13th. Some biblical scholars believe Eve tempted Adam to taste the forbidden fruit on Friday. Finally, it is believed that Cain killed Abel, just on Friday the thirteenth.

So what do those who are afraid of this day? Practical remedy is very simple — to focus on pleasant things happening in this day and not get hung up on the failures. Folklore suggests other medications. Here are some of them: climb on top of a mountain or skyscraper and burn all your socks with holes. Or standing on your head, eat a piece of cartilage. How to do — take your pick.

Battery News, 17.02.2004 12:34

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