Walking Under a Ladder Superstition

Some superstitions are easier to explain to rational people than others. Some could never be rationalized even by the most superstitious among us. The “walking under a ladder” superstition falls into the second category. But the fact is that many people will go to great lengths to avoid walking under a ladder.

How the “walking under a ladder” superstition got started is a little fuzzy. Some say that the belief that bad luck would be caused by walking under a ladder began when someone (no one knows exactly who) noticed that a leaning ladder resembled the gallows and determined that walking under a ladder would bring about your own execution.

Another explanation about the origins of the walking under a ladder superstition is thought to have started about somewhere around the time that Christ ascended into Heaven and the Holy Trinity was revealed. The triangular space that is caused when a folding stepladder is opened or when a ladder is leaned against a building or other object is said to represent the Holy Trinity and to walk through a triangle violates and desecrates God and the offender falls prey to Satan.

So what can you do if you inadvertently walk under a ladder? There are some rather creative countermeasures that are advised. We have no idea WHO advises these measures but, just in case, here they are:

* Walk backward to the ladder and spit three times through the ladder’s rungs.
* Cross you fingers and do not uncross them until you see a dog.
* Spit on your shoe and keep walking, but don’t look down at the shoe until the spittle has dried.
* Walk backwards under the ladder the same way you went through forward and make a wish as you back out.

 


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