Saturday, April 9, 2011

Old Folks' Wisdom: Science or Superstition? Test, 50 items

Abe V Rotor
Living with Nature - School on Blog

Lesson: Test. Now and then we encounter events or situations we are not sure if real or just unfounded beliefs. Take the test, individually or in group. You will find the answers at the end, with the corresponding rating. I invite old folks to take this test as well. For their convenience the font is made large and bold.

Dancing Ghosts
(Photo unedited), Sacred Heart Novitiate, Novaliches QC. The party was already over when this photo was taken, showing an image of dancers under a huge balete tree, relative of the banyan.

Which is which? Find out the answer at the end of this test.

1. Raining while the sun is out breeds insects.
2. Nangka may bear fruit from its roots underground.
3. You know how big ube tuber is by its mound.
4.
Karurayan na dumalaga (all white female fryer) is best food for a recuperating patient.
5. Swarming of winged termites and ants predicts siyam-siyam (18 days of uninterrupted rainfall)

6. Red sky in the west means coming of a typhoon.
7. When you break a glass, take another and break it too, to break the omen.
8. Kapre (ogre) lives on old trees; dwende (dwarf) lives among mushrooms.
9.When a spoon is accidentally dropped, a female guest is coming. If fork, a male guest.
10. When buying watermelon, choose that which has wide spaces between the “ribs.” It is more fleshy and sweet.

11. Actually you can hear the earth breath on a quiet summer night.
12. Predominance of cogon grass means the land is not worth farming.
13. Snake means good luck; monitor lizard bad luck.
14. Oranges with indented bottom are sweeter.
15. Powdered rhino horn is medicine and aphrodisiac.

16. Worms improve the taste of bagoong or patis. (fish sauce)
17. Just wipe kitchen with mild vinegar to drive ants away.
18. Large and round macopa contains seeds, so with lanzones.
19. Prune standing corn stalk to get fuller cobs.
20. There are people who cook ampalaya (bitter gourd) which tastes more bitter.

21. A brooding animal, like snake, is ferocious.
22. Guava seeds may cause appendicitis
23. Ginseng increase human virility or has aphrodisiac property.
24. Cut the leaves (pruning) of rice seedlings before transplanting in the field to make them grow faster and bigger.
25. When you eat twin bananas you will bear also twins.

26. During full moon crabs are lean.
27. Phases of the moons influence behavior (lunatic effect).
28. Gate must not face directly the dead-end of a road.
29. Planting cassava stem upturned will produce poisonous tuber.
30. Ring around the moon means a storm coming.

Mushrooms are often associated with superstition. It is perhaps because of their sudden appearance in most unlikely places. (UST campus Manila)

31. When you have a fishbone stuck, get the cat and gently rub its paws on the affected area of your throat.
32. When a spoon is accidentally dropped, a female guest is coming. If fork, a male guest.
33. A brooding animal, like snake, is ferocious.
34. Food offering at the family altar during festivals is homage to the spirits
35. Say tabi-tabi (or bari-bari Ilk) when entering a thicket.

36. Put sugar as fertilizer to a tree to get sweeter fruits.
37. Some people suffer body aches before a typhoon brews near.
38. When walking through a forest, wear a face mask backward to ward of tiger or lion attack.
39. When harvesting the first fruits, get an oversize basket and pretend that the harvest is heavy.
40. Expect rain if hordes of dragonflies hover low.

41. Size and shape of lips of a woman reflects her private organ.
42. Get male flower and introduce it into the female flower, like the squash, to enhance the fruit to develop.
43. Crickets are noisiest in summer.
44. When transplanting banana tiller take out the eyes (young tiller buds) arising on the corm.
45. Wet your navel with the first raindrops in summer, for good heath.

46. Noisy hen layers are not productive layers.
47. Roosters do sometimes lay eggs which are very small and sterile.
48. Throw sand into the axils of coconut leaves to prevent beetle attack.
49. A black cat brings bad luck when you meet it on the corridor or street.
50. A kingfisher's
(salaksak) sonorous call means someone is going to die. ~

Tabon Cave (Palawan), home of our early ancestors for thousands of years. How they lived and passed on their generations to the present is a great blessing.

ANSWERS: Most likely supertitious belief to Nos. 7,8,9,11,13,16,22,25,28,29,31,32,34, 35,36,39, 41,45 and 47. The rest have scientific bases.

RATING: 46-50 Outstanding. You must be one of the old folks.
41-45 Very Good . You must be living with old folks.
36-40 Good. You have a good grasp of tradition
31-34 Fair. You have not moved away from tradition.
30 and below. Read more about old folks' wisdom - scientific and superstitious beliefs.

Reference: Living with Folk Wisdom by AV Rotor, UST Publishing House EspaƱa, Manila. Book available at National Book Store, and UST Publishing House.

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