Friday 13th is considered the most unlucky day. It is also the most known widespread superstition and has become a phobia- Friggatriskaidekaphobia. The fear of Friday 13th is known as Friggatriskaidekaphobia. ‘Frigga’ being the name of the Norse goddess after whom ‘Friday’ is named in English, and ‘triskaidekaphobia’ being a fear of the number 13.
You must have seen that there is no 13th floor in most of the buildings, apartments, hotels, hospitals, etc. Even airports leave out the 13th gate. Now, this is what I guess the fear of 13 is. People even avoid getting outside of their house fearing something awful will happen to them. Many superstitious businessmen prevent signing a deal on Friday 13th. There are also some people who fear to fly on 13th.
According to a Stress Management Center and Phobia Institute, approximately 17-21 million people in the USA are affected by the Friday 13th phobia.
So, let’s find out the real reason behind this dreadful unlucky date.
- According to Christian scripture, in ancient times, Jesus was crucified on a Friday and on another Friday Eve tempted Adam with the forbidden fruit.
- Friday is believed to be unlucky after the 14th-century publication of Chaucer’s ‘The Canterbury Tales’: “And on a Friday fell all this mischance.”
- As per modern explanations, the Friggatriskaidekaphobia is said to stem from the ill-fated Apollo 13 moon mission and the Friday 13th series of films. On April 13th, just two days after the start of Apollo mission, an oxygen tank exploded leaving astronauts to fight for survival.
- For Scandinavians, 13th is considered misfortunate because their 13th mythological demigod Loki was evil. He is credited to bring great misfortune to humans.
- Last Supper: There’s a myth that 12 gods were having dinner in heaven. Then came Loki, an uninvited guest who arranged for Hoder to shoot Balder with a mistletoe-tipped arrow. Balder died, and the whole earth got dark. Holder was the blind god of darkness while Balder was the beautiful god of joy and gladness. Since then, the number 13 has been associated with sentiments of foreboding.
- As per numerologist, 12 is a complete number, i.e. there are 12 months, 12 years, 12 zodiacs, and 12 hours in a clock. The number 13 is considered irregular by comparison.
- Hangman’s Day, Friday’s consideration for unlucky is strengthened by the fact that it is the day of execution of criminals for many years.
Although the real reason for people fearing the Friday 13th is not known, these above myths and speculations are enough to convince people about the dreadfulness of the unlucky date. Whenever this date arrives, you can observe fear on people’s face.
P.S. – Every year we have at least one Friday 13th.