Whether you’re superstitious or not, it’s hard to ignore the stigma surrounding black cats. Black cats are associated with witches, witchcraft, and all things Halloween and spooky themes.
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I’ve heard conflicting opinions over the years. Some people say it’s good luck if a black cat crosses your path. I’ve heard some people say it’s bad luck. I’ve also heard that a black cat crossing your path while driving can curse you.
But what’s the real meaning and beliefs? Is there more to the power of cats beyond what we see on the surface?
Here’s everything I’ve been able to find out about the spiritual and superstitious meanings behind black moggy’s.
Do Black Cats Bring Good Luck or Bad Luck Crossing Your Path?
The reason you may have heard conflicting stories about black cats and the type of luck they carry is because it’s different in different cultures.
In Britain, Ireland, and Germany for example, it’s believed to bring you good luck if a black cat crosses your path. But only if it crosses from left to right!
While most other countries in Europe believe that black cats bring bad luck. Especially if they are following you or cross your path. Some cultures even think you are cursed to die if a black cat crosses your path, scary!
Most cultures believe that if a cat walks towards you, they are bringing good luck with them. While if they walk away, they are taking the luck with them. So, how exactly you’re supposed to benefit from that luck before they leave, I’m not sure.
Is a Black Cat Crossing Your Path While Driving Good or Bad Luck?
According to superstition, the same rules apply if you’re driving. If a black cat crosses your path from your left to right, then it’s supposed to bring you good luck.
If the cat crosses your path from the right to the left, then the opposite applies. It’s supposed to bring you bad luck. Either way, if you’re driving you need to be very careful not to harm the cat or get distracted and cause an accident.
Black Cat Coming to Your House: Good or Bad Luck?
If you have a black cat that keeps coming to your home and even letting themselves in, don’t panic. This is supposed to be a sign of good luck and prosperity. A pretty good incentive to leave a little food out for any stray black cats in the neighborhood.
The same applies if you’re having dreams about black cats and black cats coming into your home. It’s all good signs and nothing to worry about.
Where Did the Tradition of Black Cats Bringing Bad Luck Come From?
The exact time period and origins of black cats and the superstitions of bad or good luck are unclear. What we do know, however, is that in the middle ages black cats were hunted down and killed because it was thought they were witches or the devil.
They also played a pivotal part in pirate culture. Around the 18th century, pirates would take black cats with them aboard their ships believing it would bring them good luck and fortune.
Wives of fishermen would keep black cats at home too while their husbands were at sea. Believing this would bring them and their husband’s luck, and they would return safely after a good fishing trip.
From there on, the various superstitions of seeing a black cat cross someone’s path developed.
Black Cats Need Homes Too…
Due to the folklore, history, and stigma surrounding black cats, it’s actually harder for them to find loving homes. With shelters in the US finding it more difficult to rehome black cats, is there really a lot of people who believe in the bad luck they bring?
Or, are black cats just less desirable due to their color? Maybe they are seen as less interesting. It’s hard for me to say, I currently have a black cat and don’t view her any differently based on her color.
All I’m asking is that don’t pass over rehoming or adopting a black cat based on the superstitions I’ve covered in this article. They deserve a loving home as much as any color cat. Maybe even more so!
In fact, the Cats Protection organization the UK has named October 27th as ‘Black Cat Day’ to help raise awareness of this issue. While in the US, August 17th is ‘Black Cat Appreciation Day’ and is supported by the ASPCA.
What Are Your Superstitions / Beliefs?
I hope you better understand the spiritual meaning of black cat crossing your path now. As well as some of the history and folklore explaining why there is a stigma following black kitty’s around.
What’s your opinion on black cats? Are you superstitious? Have you had a personal experience you’d like to share?
I always like hearing from the community, feel free to drop me a comment below if you have anything to share on the topic.
Oh, and keep an eye out for black cats and from which side they’re crossing your path next time you’re out!