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Friday the 13th – Unlucky?

There is an ancient belief that Friday the 13th is an unlucky day; a time for misfortune. Actually, there is no scientific evidence to verify such a claim. We will study how such an unfounded fear of that date came into being. There is a blending of factors: Friday, the number 13, and Christianity.

First, we will look at Good Friday, the Christian holiday that commemorates the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and his death on the cross at Calvary. Christianity teaches that Jesus Christ, in the form of God as man on earth, suffered and died on a cross because of our sins and gave us salvation. Good Friday precedes the Friday of Easter Sunday, which Christianity teaches that Jesus Christ rose up from the dead. Good Friday may come on the day as the Jewish celebration of Passover, the day the Jews celebrate their protection from God against their enemies and their escape from bondage; slavery. Passover especially celebrates when the Jews escaped from the armies of the Pharaoh of Egypt by safely crossing the Red Sea while the Egyptian army drowned.

Before Jesus Christ was crucified, he was betrayed by one of his 12 apostles-Judas Iscariot for 30 pieces of silver. Judas later regretted the incident and then hanged himself. The idea of Jesus being crucified on a Friday; the idea of 13 individuals together as bad luck (Jesus-1 individual and the 12 apostles makes the number 13 at the table of the Last Supper; Friday the 13th became a day for a bad omen among Christians.

Also, in regards to Christianity, there was a Catholic Christian group known as the Knights of Templar. They were first formed in France in 1119 by a knight named Hugues de Payens. The order was recognized in 1139 by the Papal Bull “Omne datum optimum”. The Knights of Templar or simply called the Templars was active until 1312 when it was officially terminated by Pope Clement v by the bull “Vox in excelso”. The Knights of Templar had the job of securing the Holy Land for the Catholic Christians. Vast amounts of money, property, and recruits; personnel were given to the order. The Knightly order waged many wars against the Muslims who were controlling the Holy Land. Sometimes, the Templars made big, very impressive gains, but others times took severe losses from their enemies. 

King Philip IV of France, as well as other high ranking notables, were highly in debt to the Knights of Templar during the 14th century. It became clear that the Knights of Templar were unable to defeat the Muslims that controlled the Holy Land. Christian pilgrims who wanted to visit the Holy Land were unable to do so. Anger mounted against the inability of the Catholic Knight Christians who were unable to conquer the Muslims that usurped the Christian Holy Land; the Holy Land controlled by the Christians for many centuries. On Friday the 13th,1307, French King Philip IV arrested thousands of Knights of Templar, tortured them, and had them sign false confessions. The King stole their wealth and major property, and disgraced the whole order.

The Christian Crusades, over the centuries, failed. From being the Middle East so much, the Crusaders caused a large demand, in Europe, for goods of the Middle East, especially exotic spices, which the Crusaders brought over to their countries. There are still medieval forts that can be seen today in the Middle East that Crusaders built. Also, there are also medieval Crusaders coins which the Crusaders minted and used in the Middle East.

Friday the 13th is a day that science says is no different from any other day in regards to luck-either good luck or bad luck. There are certain old, very tall buildings; especially hotels, where there is no designated 13th floor because of people, long ago, that greatly feared the number 13 as being unlucky. The 13th floor may exist and simply is referred to by a special, very short numerical code. There have been people who, when an event was to occur on a Friday the 13th, changed their plans for the event to occur on another day.

The crew of Apollo 13

Let’s not forget the ill fated mission Apollo 13, in April 1970 whereas the astronauts Jim Lovell, Jack Swigert and Fred Haise barely escaped certain death when an oxygen tank aboard their spacecraft  exploded in space in route to a landing on the moon. Fortunately NASA was able to rescue the crew and return them safely to earth.

However, if a person looks at anything that goes wrong on a Friday the 13th, no matter how slight, chances are that at least something will be found. But, of course, we must also look at the law of averages when viewing such occurrences. Chances are that a person can find something to go wrong, no matter how slight, on any of the 365 days of the year.  

If a person checks the internet, a person can see that certain good things happened on a Friday the 13th. So, anyone that claims anything bad happened on a Friday the 13th, can be countered by various good things that happened on a Friday the 13th.

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