March 2021 – Elizabeth Rose
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In 1888 an author Edward Bellamy predicted credit cards. In his book called “Looking Backward” he wrote. Each person is given a physical punch card “with which he procures at the public storehouses, found in every community, whatever he desires whenever he desires it. This arrangement, you will see, totally obviates the necessity for business transactions of any sort between individuals and consumers”. Was this a premonition or just a coincidence?

Jules Verne predicted many details that were close in 1865. He wrote about the weightlessness that astronauts experienced, something that he could not have possibly known. He also predicted that three astronauts would be on that first moon mission and that they would launch from Tampa Florida. The Apollo 11 mission launched from the Kennedy Space Centre in Orlando nearby.

The first organ major transplant was in 1954. How ever a chemist called Robert Boyle predicted transplants 300 years ago. He had a list and nearly all of his predictions have come true. It is incredible that he made this prediction in 1660 when the medical world new so little. Surely not just a coincidence?

There are some really strange superstitions. My sister-in-law for instance will not take off her cardigan or any other clothing and put it the right way round if she has accidently put them on inside out, as she believes it will bring her bad luck. But leaving it on inside out could bring her good luck. It does look like the general opinion for this superstition stems from the fact that someone had worn their clothes inside out and had great luck that day, so a superstition is born.

Keeping your fingers crossed is a worldwide known way of hoping for your own good luck and to show solidarity to others. There are two schools of thought where this is derived from.  One is thought to go way back to the middle ages. Before Christianity they would show a cross, which was considered a very powerful symbol, and they believed it would bring spirits to bring them luck and they kept this sign until their wish came true. The other derived from a way to show support to someone.  You would cross your index finger over their index finger. They eventually realized that they could do this themselves, by crossing their own two fingers.

Salt has many superstitions. Spilling salt is bad luck. Buddhists believed salt wards off evil spirits and after a funeral they throw salt over their left shoulder. There was a belief that the devil hung around your left shoulder and the salt would ward him off.