Friday, July 8, 2011

Don't Breathe While Passing a Cemetary

As a child I always remember my older siblings and cousins telling me to hole my breath when we drove passed a cemetery. Of course this was the only way to keep the spirits of the deceased from entering our bodies. I believed in this myth for years and never really thought to research it until now. I wish I could have found out more information on this myth, but there wasn't much out there.

It can not really be date back to a specific time but since writing was developed by the early people of the earth, similar ideas have been recorded. Some believe that the idea may have come through the story of Adam and Eve. It is believed that God breathed life into Adam. So, you can see how long back the idea of breath and spirits have been intertwined. Another interesting fact that may have something to do with the myth is that in Indo-European languages, the word for "soul" always derives from the word for breath.

I know many of us believed in this myth as a child and practiced holding our breath while passing cemetaries. However, we also know that it is not a true one. I can say from personal experiencet that there have been many times that I have no held my breath in passing and no spirit of the deceased has entered my body (that I know of :p). However, we can definitely say this is a very popular myth because it even has a facebook page dedicated to it.

Breanne Bryson


  1. I've been doing this ever since I was young. My friend told me if i didn't hold my breath I'd be the next one to die. It's crazy how those little superstitions stick with us for years. Great post!

  2. This was very interesting! I always enjoy learning about something I never heard of. Since most of the posts on here I have learned of or heard about as a child I wonder why I never heard of this! Heck we use to run through a graveyard around my neighborhood! Thanks for the insight!

  3. I used to do the same thing until someone yelled at me and said you holding your breath is very rude and that it showing them disrespect so I didnt do it again! Haha this was interresting though to kind of see where it originated from!

  4. I actually have heard of this from when I was young, but I never understood the meaning behind it. I think thats very interesting.

  5. I always used to do this when I was younger (also holding your legs up in the car was part of this) I never really knew why I did this with my friends..but good thing I did since I don;t have any spirits in me!