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Thursday, September 04, 2008

Chinese Superstition

In my opinion, no society of people are more superstitious than the Chinese. Here are some beliefs involving numbers.

For start, the recent Olympic games in Beijing officially began at 8 minutes past 8 on the 8th day of the 8th month of the year 2008. To the Chinese, 8 is considered the most fortuitous of numbers making it a highly sought after for bank accounts, addresses and phone numbers. In Chinese, the word for the number 8 is ba, and sounds like their word for fortune, fa.

To the Chinese, the number 4 is to them as 13 is to us westerners-unlucky. The reason being is that the number 4 sounds like the phonetic sound of their word for death. So, 4 is to be avoided at all costs. Hotels in China omit a fourth floor, phone numbers with a 4 are avoided and no one wants to live at an address containing a 4.

"Fourteen is by far the most feared number in Chinese superstition. The combination of the words, shí = ten and = four, can mean "accidents" or, when both numbers are read separately, yāo sì, "will die." Add a five in front, and the death wish is made even more personal, as the string 514 is pronounced the same way as "I will die," wŭ yāo sì. Not the best combination for anyone with a tendency to believe in superstitions!" Stina Björkell -Numbers in Chinese superstition

Read 'The Curse of the Fuwa' for more on Chinese Superstitions.


Rod said...

I jujst wanted to say i love reading you blog. I am sorry i nvere left a comment before. Keep it up!

Lesley said...

Maybe that is why I love Chinese people so much. :-)

Andrea said...

China put a ban on ghost stories and monsters before the Olympics in order to cleanse their culture. I found that kind of interesting.

Aura said...

Thanks Rod! I expect to be around for a while-lots to write about and discover. Love VA-hope to visit again some day. Would love to discuss some of your findings.


Aura said...

Hello Girls!

Thanks for commenting- they are an interesting bunch. Lots to learn