Humans establish certain beliefs and superstitions as part of their culture by nature. All countries have superstitions, and South Korea is no exception despite its world-class advances in technology and engineering.
If you are visiting Korea as a tourist or want to stay, you should be aware of a number of unique Korean superstitions. It’s always a good idea to be aware of this superstitions as they’ll aid you on your journey through South Korea. This awareness also assist you in avoiding uncomfortable situations.
Here are 12 unique superstitions that many Korean people still believe in today and you may not have known about.
Washing your hair washes away good luck
In Korea, New Year’s Day consider as the ideal time to start the New Year with a new start. On this day, many Koreans refrain from washing their heads, as doing so they thought to wash away the good luck. Similarly, students would not wash their hair before a test in order to avoid ‘washing away’ any of the knowledge they have learned from their studies.
Fans can kill you
The weather in Korea during the summer is oppressively hot and humid. An electric fan is a cost-effective way to keep the body cool on a hot, humid summer day. These days Electric fans commonly used and considered secure. However, there is a common misconception that sleeping with an electric fan on would result in your death, as well as the death of the fan.
Writing names in red ink is a death threat
Writing a name in red ink frowned upon because red ink traditionally used to record the names of the deceased. This specific Korean superstition has arisen as a result of this ancient tradition. Writing a living person’s name in red is a bad omen, a spell, or a kiss of death.
Gummy food makes it stick
In Korean culture Exams has association with food views. Koreans think that consuming gummy foods, such as glutinous rice and toffee, makes knowledge and study ‘stick’ in the student’s mind. In comparison, if oily foods such as noodles and seaweed soup consumed before exams, the knowledge gained “slips” out of the student’s brain. Students are afraid of consuming those foods while taking some kind of examination or exam, according to this Korean superstition.
Dreaming of pigs will bring you wealth
Pigs sometimes viewed as dirty animals in many countries, but in Korea, they represent fertility and prosperity. This is because the pronunciation of “pig” is close to that of “jade.” As a result, many Koreans believe that dreaming of pigs foretells of great riches to come.
Whistling at night summons spirits
Another creepy Korean superstition includes whistling. Whistling at night thought to attract snakes and ghosts. According to Korean tradition, it should be forbidden in order to keep ghosts and snakes away from the house. Even though it involves a supernatural aspect, it is best to stop whistling at night if you are in Korea!
Four is an unlucky number
Another unusual Korean superstition concerns the number “four.”
The number 13 considered unlucky or inauspicious in many countries and cultures. Number 4 has a similar connotation in South Korea. People consider the number “four” to be unlucky because it sounds the same as the word for death.
Owing to this superstition, the number four is often omitted in multistory homes, apartments, hotel room numbers, and even hospitals. The floor/apartment with the number “four” is omitted. After three (3), it jumps to “five (5),” or is branded as “F” in place of the number “4”.
Trimming Fingernails at Night
Fingernails should not be trimmed or cut at night. If you cut your nails at night, mice said to eat the clippings and turn into humans, taking your shape or stealing your spirit.
When there was no power, clipping ones fingernails at night carried the risk of injuring one’s fingers. To stop people from trimming their fingernails at the period, the superstition of mice eating the clippings may have been included.
We all do it from time to time – shaking one or both legs. It’s normal, and we all do it when we’re nervous or just out of habit. We all know that trembling legs in a crowd looks unprofessional.
Koreans believe that progress and prosperity found in the legs of humans. Shaking your legs, according to superstition, would cause you to lose your good fortune, prosperity, and riches. This Korean superstition is beneficial because it prevents people from shaking their legs in private or in public.
Don’t put a mirror in front of a door
Mirrors are the basis for a variety of superstitions all over the world. Although Europeans and North Americans are careful not to smash mirrors, Koreans avoid positioning them directly in front of a door in the hopes of deflecting good luck.
Jumping over or over a baby is extremely dangerous, and it should never be done. According to the related Korean superstition, it assumed that if someone leaps over a child, the baby’s development will be stunted or the child will not grow tall.
Giving shoes to your partner will make them run away
Koreans believe that giving someone a pair of shoes would cause them to run away from you forever. Giving a pair of shoes considered to be a hint to the other person that you want to break up with them and that you want them to leave your life. As a consequence, offering a pair of shoes to a loved one is a no-no!