Sure, we all shiver a bit when we see the thirteenth land on a Friday, but why is the date so ominous, anyway? Here, an explainer on why the date can cause the hair on the back of our necks to prickle—and how, in some ways, the date is seriously NBD.
First off, Friday the thirteenth has nothing to do with any astrological events (and, if you read your weekly horoscope, you can see that this is a pretty good week in general, with a mid-week Jupiter shift to Scorpio giving every sign a mental and emotional lift) and those trends and patterns won’t change, regardless of what the date on the calendar says. Still, knowing a bit about the background behind Friday the thirteenth supersition can help you stay calm on Friday, as well as give you plenty of trivia to impress people.
First, the number thirteen is rooted in Christian superstition, with Judas—the disciple who betrayed Jesus Christ—having the thirteenth seat at the Last Supper. In addition, Fridays were generally the day that people were crucified in Biblical times (and it was the day that Jesus allegedly died) Combine the two, and you’ve got a pretty scary date on the calendar.
But the number thirteen is also tricky. Think about it: There are twelve zodiac signs, twelve months of the year, twelve tribes of Israel in the Judeo-Christian tradition, twelve Herculean labors … the list goes on. Thirteen is an outlier; a number that doesn’t neatly fit in the cycle that tradition has set to categorize the world around us. That’s why there’s often not a thirteenth floor in a building, and why thirteen tends to be absent from everything from addresses to elevator buttons.
And of course, this year, a Friday the thirteenth falls in October, already a month laced with superstition, creepy traditions, and fear. But just because the date looks ominous doesn’t mean that it’s a bad date—or that you should avoid doing whatever you have planned. In fact, thirteen is a lucky number in numerology, associated with hard work, new beginnings, and loyalty.
So relax, chill out, and take advantage of the day. And remember, the calendar doesn’t control your destiny—you do!
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