Saturday, March 26, 2011

"Knock on Wood"

How did the expression "knock on wood" come about?

KNOCK ON WOOD: There are several theories about the origin of this very common practice. One goes back to the child's game of `tag.' In one version of this game the child who is able to touch a tree, thereby touching wood, is free from capture.

Then there is a Biblical theory that the wood symbolizes the cross on which Christ was crucified. In Galatians (6:14) we find `But God forbid that I should glory, save the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.' The theory here is that if you have made an exaggerated boast you will be forgiven if you turn your thoughts to the Cross.

Still another notion is that `knocking on wood' goes far back into ancient times, when spirits were thought to live in trees. So should danger threaten, simply rap on the trunk of a tree and summon up the aid of the good spirit within.

There is an Irish belief that you `knock on wood' to let the leprechauns know that you are thanking them for a bit of good luck.

A Jewish version says it originated during the Spanish Inquisition under Torquemada during the 1490s. During that time Jews were in flight and since temples and synagogues were built of wood, they evolved a code to use in knocking on doors to gain admission. Since this resulted in lives being saved, it became commonplace to `knock on wood' for good luck.

Take your choice of these five theories - but be sure to `knock on wood' so you will pick the right one.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Lucky Charms

Thai people believe in supernaturalism and animism,

even if they are Buddhists, Christians or Moslems.
Amulets and other items like the Ta krut are used as a good luck charm or for protection against evil spirits or ghosts.

The Ta Krut is an ornate plaited cord good luck charm and mostly worn by young boys around their waist.

The parents provide a Ta Krut for their beloved sons
to protect them.

When the boys get older, often a Palad Khik
(a small phallus like object) is added to the Ta Krut,
to enhance fertility and for good luck in love affairs.

Most times these Ta Kruts are gotten at a Buddhist temple from the monks. Some candle and incense shops sell them also.