Growing up in an orthodox family down south, there is one constant thing that everyone has to go through. That would be the elders at home scolding or restricting you to do this and not to do that. This has been part of my growing up too, where at a young age I obeyed and then during adolescence I just opposed everything and with the act of growing up, I started realizing the reason why we were advised to do few things. In India, we have a tendency to relate everything to God and that I believe has been the reason why the current generation believes many of what ancestors has done is nothing but superstition. A deeper insight and you realise nothing but brilliance in many of the actions.
For a start, we used to greet with a Namaste and never a shake hand. This was looked down upon and there were even sessions on how a person should be giving Handshakes. Now with the Pandemic, even foreigners have started to follow the art of Namaste. It required a pandemic for us to believe Namaste is a better way of greeting.
Our ancestors asked us not to sleep with our heads on north side. They said Lord of Death will enter though leg and cause harm to us. We laughed at it, but recent studies have proved beyond doubt that placing your head on north side while sleeping is bad for health since the magnetic radiations travel from north to south.
Latest research on impact to a baby inside the womb based on the actions of the mother goes a long way in shaping the character, perceptions of the kid as it grows up. The latest research advises pregnant women to listen to soothing music, think positive, chant slokas and not fight. Wasn’t this the same thing that was advised by our ancestors? They said pray to God, keep chanting slokas and do not walk outside alone in the night so as to not get scared.
Our ancestors told you should take bath once you come back home after having haircut or from a place where death has happened. We named it superstition or rather one step more, we said it is stupidity. Now, we are advised that as viruses gets transmitted from these places.
Another one of the most important thing that was advised to us was to sleep early and get up early to be healthy. It is been found out that our biological clock works on the said time and sleeping late takes toll on one’s health over a period of time.
I was told by my parents not to do anything wrong as the Lord would be sitting next to me and noting down everything. I after a period thought, wow, does God have no other work but to note down the activities of a person who is not so important? To think about it now, it was just to instill a fear in us not to commit any mistakes which will harm others.
I strongly believe that not all the actions followed by our ancestors were superstitions. It had a reason behind it and our previous generations followed it to dot when related to do something with God. The current generation needs a scientific rational for all actions. This rational was not explained to our previous generations and therefore, we find many of it not being followed now.
At the end, not all actions of our ancestors are superstitions or beliefs, but have a sound scientific rational behind it. It is up to us to realize that and follow those which is in lieu with the current environment.
These are few of the things we were asked to follow. We will be coming up with lot more of the same in subsequent articles.