Humans are superstitious creatures, some more than others. Many scholars have suggested that developing a superstitious belief is about placing an element of control on an otherwise uncontrollable situation, force or action; effectively giving one “peace of mind” in specific situations. I believe that the sphere of superstition encompasses much more than this element alone.

Superstition itself can be seen as proof of our spiritual acknowledgment. We admit that higher forces exist; unseen, pervading life all the while. This is clearly seen in cultures across the globe with one specific number.

The number 13. This number has long been feared by humans for various reasons. Many tall buildings lack a 13th floor, and many airlines exclude a 13th row of seats. Though, when we look at the history of the number and what it represents in both religion and numerology, we can see a contradiction.

The basic definition of the number 13 is that it represents cleansing and purification. This number calls forth the test, the tribulations and the departure; death. It symbolizes the death to the physical body or to oneself and the birth to the spirit; the passage on a higher level of existence. This is clear in many cultures.

Regarding the Mayan calendar, we are currently in the 13th Baktun, which ends on December 21st, 2012. This marks the return or completion of the grand cycle; the end of an age. In the Zodiac, the number 13 represents an eternal return, the same as the first hour after 12. This number also represents eternal love; as with Jesus and his 12 apostles, or Jacob and his 12 sons.

Continuing the mystery of 13, the 13th mystery of the Tarot remains unnamed. Here, it represents the uncertainty, the hesitation, the transformation, the end of something and a renewal; an abrupt happening or a rupture, an otherwise very important change.

We come now to Friday the 13th; a historic superstitious day. In the Christian faith, the number 13 represents the Virgin Mary. She has been thought to have died on a Friday the 13th in August. Correspondingly, the first and last visions of Mary appearing to the children at Fatima occurred on May 13th and June 13th. For  Kabalists, the 13 represents the head of the beast, snake or Satan. In Christianity, the Virgin Mary is supposed to “crush the head” of the beast.

Throughout history and time, the number 13 is associated with supreme spiritual transformation; returning, purification, transcendence, completion, change and many other elements. It is a number that represents the soul and the spirit; the ascent to heaven; though we still fear it. Interestingly, in some ancient texts, the soul is thought to weigh 13 ounces.

Within the sphere of superstition, we must visit the notions without fear and instead with excitement. Regarding 13, the return of a cycle is a wonderful passing. It is a time when truth is revealed; when the gift of life is seen in its perfect wholeness; when the spirit ascends. We only fear what we cannot know. Completion is a part of the natural world; the world of spirit and ether. Look with the heart open, and see.

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42 thoughts on “13

  1. Many of the newer estates where I live lack a number 13 for practical reasons, as that number knocks value off a new house. Een if people dismiss superstition, it has an impact on people’s behavior.

  2. Thanks for the explanations on 13. I loved the blog. Quite informative. I am not superstitious though. I don’t want to think about tomorrow. I usually wait for it to surprise me. Great blog.

  3. This is wonderful information for the fearful…and I didn’t realize it but I just published one of my Phantoms on this special day! 🙂

      1. Disclaimer: I really do not know what I’m talking about. However, I can’t seem to keep my thoughts to myself. I have gained a few friends over the years that seem to have that 6th sense thing goin on. And they claim, the angels that watch over us, are constantly trying to communicate with us, and they often use numbers. For me, it was always 2:22…the time, postage, yadayada. When I mentioned it, my Psychic-tpye friend smiled, and said, that the angels were trying to tell me, that all is well. Stop my worrying, all is well. As it happened, I had actually been experiencing a lot of anxious thoughts, over a period of time, over my Mom’s diagnosis of breast cancer. And, she is doing quite well these days. I have no idea if this number thing really is the angel’s way of texting those of us students down here in earth school. But, I’d like to think so:)

  4. Good post, Jay! Interesting facts and thoughts on the underlying reasons for superstitions, I enjoyed reading it 🙂

  5. I’ll never forget — my 9th grade English teacher was from Greece, and he was a wonderful guy. When Friday the 13th rolled around, he gave us the word for ‘fear of the number 13,’ tristadecaphobia. Has stuck with me all these years.

  6. Hi, Both of my parents were born on Friday the 13th in their respective months and years. I have never found the number itself to be unlucky. Yesterday was quite a good day for me as I had a very promising job interview, I got front row parking for all of the errands, and secured the elusive prom dress for my daughter. A good day indeed!!!. I have had physical misfortune happen more than one time on a Thursday the 12th however. BUt I give the day no more credit for my clumsiness than any other.


  7. Thank you for the wonderful perspective here, especially the connection between superstitions and faith or at least an unconscious belief in something bigger and external. I have never put words to similar thoughts I have had in the past. I enjoyed seeing those thoughts brought forward in such an easy to follow manner. Thank you.

  8. I like the number 13 (Though I am prone to be partial to even numbers. I add 1+3 so I can have 4. :-)) and always have…and black cats… I never understood why people feared Friday the 13th, but I have gotten into some great superstitious discussions because of it.

    I enjoyed reading this, you seem to connect and gather information in a great flow.

  9. Excellent! I really enjoyed the additional history in this. It connected some dots. The history of 13 being associated with the “Snake” or “Beast”, and the death of Mother Mary, certainly makes sense out of the thing with the Templars….if they thought the Templars were evil, and that Mary is associated with Friday the 13, and Mary is associated with crushing the head of the beast, then crushing the Templars on a Friday the 13 adds such another layer of symbolism…additional, demoralizing propoganda aimed at those sympathetic to the Templars. Very effective, no doubt. Thanks for such a thought provoking post!

  10. Funny that you should post this. I guess Friday was the 13th. Someone just pointed out last week that an ICU unit at the hospital is missing room 13. Fun post.

  11. For as a christian, it depends on how you believe in fate. If you believe that 13 is not lucky so the bad vibration will focus in you. For me everyday that god created is a lucky day…

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