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6 Dark Superstitions and Their Meanings

Cindy is an author and paranormal enthusiast who has published numerous books and articles on the subject of true unexplained phenomena.


Before we begin, be reminded that what follows are superstitions and nothing more. Please do not take any of them to heart.

1. Whistling Past a Graveyard

Few places have a creep factor that can match that of the average cemetery. This can be attributed, among other things, to the belief that the souls of those who have been laid to rest often wander the grounds after the sun goes down in an endless quest to be reunited with their earthly bodies.

While most people of sound mind avoid graveyards during the twilight hours, there are those who are drawn to these gardens of the dead like flies to honey. For the most part, since those who have passed on are rarely a threat to the living, these interlopers have little to fear. That is, of course, unless they flaunt their gift of life in front of those who covet what they can no longer have.

It is said that to whistle when passing the gates of a cemetery is to call forth the spirits of those who rest inside. Attracted by the sound, these wayward souls will follow the source until he or she falls silent. If the graveyard is out of sight when this occurs, the whistler will find out soon enough that they have invited something into their life that, once it has latched on, seldom leaves willingly.

Similarly, those who find themselves driving or walking near a graveyard after dark are advised to hold their breath until they clear the site. To do otherwise is to risk inhaling a wandering spirit who will then take possession of the physical form they have been searching for which, in this case, is that of the hapless passerby.

As with most things, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. So, if you find yourself in or near a cemetery in the hours that fall between dusk and dawn, remember to keep your lips together, lest you bring home something other than memories.


2. Blood on the Moon

In folklore, to see blood on the Moon is a sure sign that someone close to you will come to harm within three days. The prophesized event may be as minor as a scraped knee or a paper cut. Sometimes, however, it can be much worse. Since fate is loathe to reveal its secrets, in the end, it's a game of wait and see.

A crimson Moon is a natural phenomena that occurs every two and a half years or so during a lunar eclipse. When this happens, the Moon, which is full at the time, takes on a reddish hue as Earth passes between it and the Sun. While this occurrence may be considered run-of-the-mill by some, those who live and breathe by the laws of superstition view it as an omen. For them, the blood that is spilled on the Moon is a grim warning of things to come.

For some, a hole in your bread does not bode well.

For some, a hole in your bread does not bode well.

3. Holey Bread

Freshly baked bread is a temptation few can refuse. Every now and again, however, when slicing into a tantalizing loaf, one finds a large hole running through the middle. For most of us, this simply means that the dough wasn't prepped properly, allowing gas to become trapped in the center. Those with a penchant for being superstitious know better. To them, this empty space is a cryptic message from beyond.

According to this foreboding little anecdote, a tunnel inside a loaf of bread represents the hole in the ground that will someday hold the remains of the one whose hands formed the dough. Unfortunately for the ill-fated confectioner, the larger the space, the closer they are to the grave.


4. Power in the Blood

This grim superstition is rooted in the occult as well as some factions of Christianity. It stems from the notion that blood, but only that which is freshly spilt, holds powers that can be used for both good and evil. That being said, only the most depraved souls actually put this belief into action.

It is important to note that the blood in question cannot have been spilled by the person wishing to use it for their own devices. Rather, the event that resulted in the mishap must occur naturally. An individual looking to procure this precious liquid can only do so if they stumble upon it completely by accident; under any other circumstances, it is rendered useless.

For those who believe in such things, it has been put forth that if one witnesses an accident in which injuries have occurred, they need only dip a piece of cloth into the blood of the unfortunate victim, living or otherwise, in order to harness its power.

After pilfering the life-sustaining substance, the holder of the cloth can use it to wish for good fortune, or alternatively, to lay a curse upon someone they believe has done them irreparable harm. Of course, as with most things, this act is not without consequences.

If the person uses that which they have obtained to the detriment of another, they will pay for this at a later date by having their own blood spilled in a similar fashion and, more often than not, used for ill-advised purposes. The process then becomes an endless circle that is broken only when the blood is left untouched until it is allowed to dry, at which time it loses all potency. When this occurs, the curse is broken at last and the dark pall is lifted.

Mirrors can be dangerous portals. . .

Mirrors can be dangerous portals. . .

5. Breaking a Mirror Brings Bad Luck

Mirrors hold a special place in the annals of folklore and superstition. It is believed that each time they capture our reflection, they steal a portion of our essence that can never be retrieved. It is for this reason that antique mirrors are items to be avoided. Having seen decades upon decades of images, they are teeming with entities waiting to be released back into the world.

As we all know, to break a looking glass is to incur seven years of bad luck. It is also said that if a person stares into one for a lengthy period of time, their features will contort in such a way as to render them unrecognizable, even to themselves. This horrifying image is allegedly the subject's true face that they keep hidden from the world. These are not, however, the most disturbing of a mirror's fabled capabilities.

It is said that to allow mirrors to face one another is to open a portal from which creatures that do not cast reflections, including the devil himself, can enter this realm.

This act, once done, is not easily undone. In the end, the only surefire way to guard against such an occurrence is to avoid it in the first place. With this in mind, if you feel the need to have more than one mirror in a room, place them on the same wall. To do otherwise is to risk opening a gateway to and from a world inhabited by the creatures we believe only exist in our worst nightmares.


6. A Vampire's Obsession

We all know that vampires recoil at the sight of a crucifix, cannot be photographed or seen in mirrors, abhor sunlight, and detest garlic. Those schooled in folklore believe them to be clever entities with incredible self-control who don't necessarily sprout fangs and feed on everything that moves the minute the sun goes down. It is thought that, through trial and error, they have become masters at keeping their condition under wraps, thus ensuring their longevity.

As superstition has it, if one has an inkling that a vampire has somehow infiltrated their life, not that this is a common occurrence, there is a non-confrontational way of outing the suspect.

In order to force a vampire to give up the ghost, so to speak, one need only tie a string, rope, scarf, or any other item of length, in an intricate series of knots and leave it out in the open. Apparently, vampires are unable to resist the urge to untie knots and will immediately set about untangling the mess, come what may. Since most people take little pleasure in such a bothersome task, if a guest to your home spies a knotted object and cannot be persuaded to leave it be, you would do well to show them the door before they turn their attention to you.


  • Rod Serling, Earl Hamner Jr.-The Hunt-1962
  • Up and Down With the Rolling Stones-Tony Sanchez-1979
  • The Search for Dracula-Echo Bridge Entertainment-1996

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.