10 Superstitions Black Folk Can’t Let Go Of

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Life can be frighteningly unpredictable. So, it’s no wonder that people look for clues, no matter how irrational, to exercise some type of control in their lives. The following superstitions, prevalent in the black community supposedly predict good, bad and sometimes scary things to come.


Palm Itching

When your palms start itching it means more than dry skin. I remember as a kid complaining to my grandmother that my palm was itching. She promptly told me that some money was coming my way. Now, I can’t remember if this money ever came, but it was a nice thought to take my mind off of this uncomfortable feeling.

Photo by Christian Vierig/Getty Images)

Don’t Split the Pole

If you find yourself walking down the street with another black person and suddenly an obstruction, like a pole, pops up in your path don’t split it– meaning both of you should walk on the same side of the object as you pass it instead of walking on opposite sides. It’s bad luck. I didn’t hear about this superstition until later in life so I’m always doing this, inadvertently. While I hear people get faux outraged when I do it, I don’t know if anyone really believes it to be true.


Fish Dreams

If you dream of fish, it doesn’t mean you have a strong desire to go swimming. Dreaming of fish means that someone you know is expecting a child in the near future. I know it sounds far fetched but this is a superstition I actually believe. It’s happened quite a few times in my own family as well as a few friends too. This one runs deep in the black community. The superstition was even referenced in the movie Soul Food. 


Transferring energy through the hair

I can’t really say where I got this one from but I don’t allow just anyone to put their hands in my hair. And it might not be the reason you assume. A lot of black women have an issue with people touching their hair because they don’t want to feel like an exhibit in a zoo. I don’t generally have an issue with decent people touching my hair. But I definitely don’t want certain people to touch my hair because I believe the hair can absorb negative energy. In other words, if a person is shady or exudes a bad vibe it’s nothing for them to transmit that energy through your hair, which is dangerously close to your brain.

having a meltdown


Don’t Let White People Touch Your Hair

Not only should you not let white people touch your hair because you’re not some type of rare specimen, but I’ve heard that back in the day white folks considered it “good luck” to rub a black person’s head. Not that you were letting people pet you in the first place, but now you have an additional reason to avoid all of that.


Menstrual Blood in Spaghetti

Fellas, ever wonder why your momma told you not to eat from just anybody? Well this “special spaghetti” might have something to do with it. This voodoo-ish type superstition says that if a woman puts some of her menstrual blood in your food and you eat it, you’ll fall in love with her. So unless you want a mouth full of menses, be careful who you let cook for you.


Don’t Let People Take Your Picture

Have you ever seen old folks run from the camera? It might not just be because they don’t think they look good. There might be a reason for that. An old superstition says that whenever some takes your picture, a piece of your soul is captured as well. Extreme? Yes. But I couldn’t make this one up if I tried.


Ear Itching

Your ears been bothering you lately? That may mean that somebody’s chatting about you. You can only hope that they’re saying good things.


Don’t Put Your Purse Lower Than Your Moneymaker

In case you’re confused, your moneymaker is your other pocketbook in this instance. Other people say you’re not supposed to put your purse on the floor–which is coincidentally also lower than your moneymaker. The legend has it that if you put your purse on the floor or below your moneymaker then you’ll be broke.


Don’t Accept Shoes From A Man As A Gift

Word is if you accept shoes as a gift, the very man who gave them to you will walk out of your life. I’ve never put this theory into practice, but I do remember that when Evelyn Lozada and Chad “OchoCinco” Johnson started dating he gave her a pair of shoes. And as we all know, those two are no longer together.

What superstitions do you or your family jokingly or seriously believe?

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