Does bad moon rise on Friday the 13th?
Appeal Staff Writer
Today may not be the day for paraskevidekatriaphobics to be out and about.
Paraskevidekatriaphobia is the term for people with a morbid, irrational fear of Friday the 13th.
The fear of Friday the 13th comes from two separate fears – the number 13 and the fear of Fridays. Both are deep-rooted in Western culture, most notably Christian theology.
Thirteen is significant to Christians because it is the number of people who were present at the Last Supper (Jesus and the 12 apostles). Judas, the apostle who twice betrayed Jesus, was the 13th member of the party to arrive.
Christians traditionally have been wary of Fridays because Jesus was crucified on a Friday. Additionally, some theologians say Adam and Eve ate from the forbidden fruit on a Friday, and that the Great Flood began on a Friday.
Even as Friday wanes into the darkness, the paraskevidekatriaphobics may not feel so safe as the evening brings in a full moon. At its peak at 1:48 a.m. Saturday, the Full Wolf Moon will illuminate the January sky bringing a glow to the snow-capped mountains.
The wolf packs howled outside Indian villages during the cold and deep snows of midwinter, giving rise to the moon’s name. Sometimes it was also referred to as the Old Moon or the Moon After Yule.
The full moon and violence
Most violence, aggression and crime-related incidents had no change during a full moon. The only noted increases were aggravated assaults and “general crimes,” according to Neuroscience for Kids.
Suicides did not increase in a four-year period during the full moon, although they were noticed to be increased during the new moon; admission records of 18,495 patients to a psychiatric hospital in an 11-year period were lowest during the full moon; 841 cases of “self-poisonings” in a four-year period did occur more often on the day of the full moon.
Emergency calls to a suicide prevention/crisis call center in a two-year period were highest during the new moon; in more than 54,000 trauma patients admitted to emergency rooms in three hospitals there was no increase in admissions or the severity of the injury during the full moon.
In 246,926 traffic accidents involving property damage and more than 50,000 traffic accidents with non-fatal injuries in a nine-year period, there was no relationship found between accidents and the moon phase. However, the research did find both types of accidents occurred more often on Friday and Saturday and on Halloween.
The incidents of animal bites from a cat, rat, horse or dog were found to be significantly higher around the full moon.
— Contact Rhonda Costa-Landers at firstname.lastname@example.org or 881-1223.