Sneezing Myths and Superstitions: Once, Twice and Thrice Good Or Bad Luck?

Are you worried about your sneezing and relating it to Good or Bad luck? Do you believe in a sneezing superstition like a sneeze once or twice or thrice will be unlucky for you?

We have gone into detail and found all about this myth.

In our journey of traveling through various myths and superstitions, today we bring ourselves at the door of a very peculiar myth, and might I warn you, we have no control over its origin! Because it’s a reflex. Confused? Let me make it clear.

We are talking about sneezing, which is as old as we are.

sneezing myths and superstitions

Sneezing Myths and Superstitions – At a Glance

Want to know about the different interpretations of sneezing but don’t want to read the whole post? I got you covered, here’s a TLDR.

  • In China, sneezing is associated with good or bad luck based on the number of times you sneeze.
  • In Polish Culture, sneezing is a sign of your mother-in-law talking ill behind your back.
  • In Scottish Culture, some believe that a child is under the clutches of a fairy until he/she sneezes.
  • The Ancient Greeks believed sneezing to be a good sign from the Gods.
  • And no, your eyes won’t pop out and your heart won’t skip a beat when you sneeze.

If you want more details, read further into the article.

My Experience And Story With Myths Related To Sneezing

myths related to sneezing

I still laugh when I think of the day which I have exclusively associated as ‘sneezing gone wrong’. I was attending my cousin’s wedding in our hometown when I was given the chance to introduce myself to this myth.

As the bride started walking on the altar towards the broom, everyone kept silent to make this moment unforgettable for the bride and groom. At that precise moment, my reflexes took over and I sneezed loudly. Every eye that was previously focused on the bride was now looking at me.

They kept looking and looking as if expecting something from me. I didn’t understand as I had already muttered my polite apology.

They only took their eyes off me, when the priest cleared his throat rather loudly. 

The bride started walking again, hand in hand with her father, but her long gown got caught up in her sandals and her face was met with the floor.

Everyone was shocked and rushed to help her. When the bride got up she was looking at me angrily. I was confused but then I realized that everyone was looking at me with distaste in their eyes.

Afterward, my aunt was kind enough to inform me that the bride fell at the altar because I sneezed only once and not twice!

I was flabbergasted but also humored because of this, which is why I decided to do some personal research.

Myths About Sneezing Once, Twice, And Thrice

myths about sneezing once twice and thrice

It is believed in many cultures and countries that sneezing once is bad luck. You have to sneeze at least twice to bring good luck again. Weird, I know.

It is believed that if you sneeze once, someone is talking behind your back. If you sneeze twice, someone is missing you. And, if you sneeze thrice then someone is in love with you!

If you sneeze more than that, then please visit a doctor.

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Sneezing Myths and Superstitions in Different Countries

Let us now see what different countries believe about Sneezing related myths.

In China, sneezing is thought to bring bad luck or good luck based on the number of times or on the time you sneeze. It is believed that if you sneeze in the morning if someone is missing you.

If you sneeze in the evening then you will receive an invitation. If you sneeze at night then you will be meeting a friend soon.

In Polish culture, it is believed that if you sneeze once, then your mother-in-law is talking ill about you.

Whereas in Scottish culture, a child is believed to be under the clutches of a fairy until and unless he/she sneezes.

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In Ancient Greece, sneezing was believed to be a sign from their gods of something good. The myth originated from the Odyssey when Penelope becomes elated after her son sneezes while she is talking about revenge. Penelope takes this as a positive sign from the gods.

It is even believed that when a listener sneezes after the speaker speaks, then it means that the speaker is telling the truth.

This myth is also believed in some parts of India with people saying a thank you, regarding a sneeze as proof of truth. People from the UK and the USA are no different.

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Eyes Popping and Heart-Stopping Experience

Many people believe that if they don’t close their eyes while sneezing, their eyes might pop out. But that’s not the case, closing our eyes while sneezing is a reflexive action.

Even if you for some reason do not close your eyes, then trust me, they won’t pop out!

Similarly, believing that our heart stops for a millisecond or skips a beat is wrong. Because it doesn’t. Our heart just changes its rhythm. 

So relax, you are not going to die because of sneezing.

Why Do We Say God Bless You When Someone Sneezes?

Some cultures believe that sneezing might cause our souls to leave our bodies. To stop the devil from taking it, we say ‘God bless you. So that our wandering soul returns to us.

It is also believed that the origin of this phrase is in England. When half of England’s population was wiped out because of the plague. Pope George started the saying ‘God bless you’ to anyone who sneezed. It quickly became a habit for everyone too. Since sneezing was one of the first symptoms of the plague.

Also, a myth was formed where people believed that sneezing causes our heart to stop for a millisecond. Therefore, saying something like ‘God bless you’ or ‘live healthily’ was made mandatory.

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How To Reverse The Bad Luck Or Ill Omen Bought By Sneezing Once?

Reversing bad luck bought by sneezing once is very easy.

Here you go:

  1. After you have sneezed once, wipe your nose.
  2. Mutter a polite ‘sorry’.
  3. Straighten your spine.
  4. Make a way for a broad smile on your face, filled with positivity.
  5. And go on with your work.

Told you it was easy!

Science Behind Sneezing

science behind sneezing

We have seen the myths and superstitions about sneezing. Now let’s check out our beloved science behind sneezing.

Sneezing is our body’s reflexive action to clean our nasal chamber of dirt, dust, pollens, etc. We sneeze when we are suffering from a cold due to our body trying to eliminate the unwanted fluids from our body.

Should We Believe The Myths?

Believing in such myths is really up to you. 

Even if you believe in these myths, please don’t take them too seriously. 

Instead, try finding a scientific perspective about it and enhance your knowledge. Sometimes believing in these myths can lead us to go back ages.

FAQ’s About Superstition Related To Sneeze

What should I do if I sneeze five times a day?

You should probably visit a doctor.

Is sneezing lucky or unlucky?

This differs from culture to culture, there are various explanations in different myths all over the world, although, generally it is seen as a bad sign to sneeze.

Conclusion: Sneezing Myth And Superstition Meaning,

Now, I will lead us back to the door of sneezing myths and superstitions and close it. By the way, I am so not responsible for the bride falling, it was her gown’s fault really!

The Sneezing myth is something that one should simply ignore as it has no relation to any bad luck. It may only be a coincidence if something good or bad happens immediately after you sneeze.

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