In the realm of well-known superstitions, a broken mirror equals bad luck, even nowadays. There is even talk of this bad luck lasting for up to 7 years. The next time you move house, be sure to protect your mirrors during the moving period, or you too could be cursed! As is often the case, the origins of this superstition go back to ancient times, yet still manage to haunt us even now... Certain gestures, certain days, just like the number 13, are to be avoided if you do not want to see misfortune knocking at your door. What is fascinating about superstitions, is that they have no boundaries, and no time limits, plus, they are frequent in all civilizations. Indeed, superstitions feed on an emotion that resides in each of us, an emotion that we fight throughout our lives, and that's fear.
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Mirror, mirror on the wall, who has the fairest soul of all?
Since antiquity, the mirror has been the reflection of the body, but also of the soul. Indeed, for the Romans, these objects stole the souls of those who looked into them. This essentially means that breaking a mirror is tantamount to breaking your soul.
As experts of foretelling and prediction, the Greeks practiced catoptromancy. This is a method which consists in seeing the future in a reflection obtained thanks to a little water poured into the bottom of a container. If the reflection broke, however, the consultant was cursed.
The Mirror of Venus, Edward Burne-Jones
According to legends in the Middle Ages, the mirror was also a prison for demons and the souls of the dead, so breaking it is like letting out those evil spirits who would go on to spread their wicked waves throughout the household.
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What if I break a mirror in a dream?
Even in a dream, breaking a mirror or seeing one in pieces is a bad sign. It's a symbol of rupture, trouble and sorrow. For Freud, seeing a broken mirror in a dream meant that you were preoccupied with an unfinished project. Dreaming that you see a broken mirror is a warning that someone close to you is harboring negative feelings (or resentment) towards you. You must be very careful. Here, do not make any hasty or angry decisions, as it is best to talk and apologize to this person.
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Why 7 years of bad luck?
The number 7 is a symbolic figure that can be found almost everywhere, in olden days as well as in religion and culture. We associate it with the 7 deadly sins, the number of days it took God to create the world, the number of chakras and even the 7 wonders of the world, etc.
This superstition has its origins in the first century, under the Roman Empire. At the time, it was believed that mirrors, which were rare and precious at the time, reflected the image of bodies but also of souls. To break one's reflection was thus to damage one's soul. The Romans believed in 7-year life cycles. Each cycle corresponded to a specific period of existence. Development from 0 to 7 years, the age of reason from 7 to 14 years, and so on. So, if you break a mirror, the misfortune lasts until the end of the cycle, which is 7 years.
In China, breaking a mirror is the omen of a doomed couple, in England breaking a mirror is the omen of a broken friendship, and can even herald the disappearance of a dear friend.
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How can one get rid of this curse?
Have you cracked a mirror and want to avoid the 7 years of bad luck? Take the different pieces of the mirror and throw them into murky water. It’s also possible to bury the broken pieces in your garden on a full moon night. It is very easy to break a mirror, and it is not necessarily a source of bad luck. Accidents happen for no reason, and the best way to avoid bad luck is to always think positively and be optimistic. If you are constantly thinking negative thoughts, there is a greater chance that something will go wrong in your life. It's possible that simply not believing in curses will allow you to never suffer from them, think about it!