7 World’s Most Intriguing Taboos
Throughout history, we can see that there were many strange behaviors and superstitions among different religions and nationalities. Also, many of them still hold a place in our society. Taboo represents some forbidden topic, and it is usually related to religious acts. Typically, most taboos are connected to relations between men and women, food, and superstition. When something is considered as taboo in some society, you should never speak about that when you visit that place.
While people that live in highly developed countries like the United States, Canada, Germany, or Japan, are considered to be less superstitious, even in their culture, there are some forbidden themes. The most common taboo among all people is related to sexuality and sexual relations. Also, speaking about all sorts of pleasures is especially forbidden for women in many cultures, especially in the Middle East. However, progressive western countries are much more relaxed on that topic, and you are free to speak about that. Also, there are various sex toys available today, like the ones that you can see at sextoysaver.co.uk. Furthermore, while speaking about sexual relations is taboo in most cultures, some much more bizarre ones are still holding place. In this article, we are going to introduce you to some of the most intriguing taboos.
1. Speaking the Names of Dead
We can see that some cultures from Africa, like Bahima people in Central Africa, still holds a strong relation to superstitions, and their religion is full of various sacred rituals. Also, in their culture, it is forbidden to use the names of dead people. For example, when their king dies, his name is banned for use. Moreover, even if their king had the name of some animal, they will find a new one. On the other side, the Kiowa Indians have a similar tradition, and when some of the relatives in one family dies, the whole family will change names. This belief is related to the presence of ghosts, and they are changing their names to prevent the occurrence of them.
2. Sex Taboo in Peru
While sexual relations are taboo, and most people in the world avoid speaking about them in public, the Manu people in Peru consider sex much more intriguing. These people connect the relations between men and women as a way to summon ghosts, bring bad luck, and much more. In that matter, mothers are even teaching their daughters that sex is uncomfortable and never pleasant. Moreover, people who are married together are always ashamed of each other’s bodies, and they are always wearing clothes, even when sleeping together.
3. Food Taboos
The most known taboo related to food is from Middle-East cultures, Islam religion, and Israeli people, and that is that these cultures forbid eating pork. In Israel, they also don’t eat shellfish as well. Besides these well-known facts about food taboos, there is also a tradition among Zafimanelo people in Madagascar, who are locking their doors each time during the meal and avoid being seen during lunch. On the other side, the Warua people in Fiji separates men and women during meals. One of the most bizarre food taboo comes from Gabon, where people are not allowed to touch the food that their king left on the plate. Instead of touching eat, they are burring it as a way to chase away evil forces.
4. Gift Taboos
Knowing that there are still so many taboos among people in the world, buying a simple present is not so easy. For example, if you have a friend from Singapore, he might get offended if you buy him any sort of sharp objects like scissors or knives because that represents an end of a friendship. Furthermore, straw sandals are worn at funerals, and you should avoid buying them as a gift as well. In the Middle East, handkerchiefs and tissues symbolize tears and sadness, and you should never consider them as a gift to someone. Nonetheless, never wrap the gift in the white paper when in Japan, because this color represents death in this country.
5. Pregnancy Taboos
Like with many other parts of our lives, there are also many taboos and forbidden acts associated with pregnancy. For example, you should never touch the baby bump in Liberia, because there is a belief in their culture that the touch of a stranger could bring evil spirits. Moreover, people in China never hold any sharp objects near the bed of a pregnant woman. In Malaysia, pregnant women are forbidden to carry water or fire or to look at anything ugly. Also, the husband will plant a pineapple under their home because they think that the spikes of this fruit can protect them from ghosts. Also, there are many other taboos for pregnant women, like that they should not visit any weddings in China or funerals in Israel.
6. Hunting Taboos
One of the most bizarre hunting taboos is from the Kayan people in Borneo, who believes that the panthers have a stronger soul than people. In that matter, in case that someone kills a panther, he must step eight times over the body of a killed animal and repeat the words, Panther, my soul is under my soul. Another interesting taboo comes from Malagasy people, who believe that the boa snake brings bad luck, and whoever kills it must lie under the stream of water for more than a month during the day. Moreover, people who live on Nias Island in Indonesia never laugh while they are building traps for animals because they think that their trap will fail in that case. Also, they even avoid sleeping with their wives in the night when they made the trap.
7. Taboos for Kings
There is a unique tradition in Sierra Leone, where people are allowed to neat their king during the first day of his inauguration. However, the leading people are using this ceremony to get rid of someone by naming him as a king and killing him in the same day. For rules in Maori culture, they are forbidden to blow on fire because their breath is considered as sacred, and blowing a fire might harm the food they eat and bring diseases.