The Unlucky Numbers in Chinese Culture

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In many cultures, there are certain numbers that are considered unlucky. These numbers are believed to bring bad luck, misfortune, or even death. While the specific unlucky numbers vary from culture to culture, there are some numbers that seem to be universally avoided. In this article, we’ll explore some of the most unlucky numbers across the world and the reasons behind their superstitions.

The Origin of Superstitions

Superstitions have been around for as long as human civilization. They are an attempt by people to explain the unexplainable, to make sense of the world around them. Many superstitions are based on ancient beliefs and cultural traditions that have been passed down from generation to generation. In Chinese culture, there are many superstitions, including the belief in unlucky numbers.

The Significance of Numbers in Chinese Culture

Numbers are an integral part of Chinese culture. They are used in many aspects of daily life, from naming babies to choosing wedding dates. Each number has its own unique meaning and symbolism. Some numbers are considered lucky, while others are believed to be unlucky.

The Unlucky Numbers

In Chinese culture, the number 4 is considered to be very unlucky. This is because the word for “four” sounds similar to the Chinese word for “death.” As a result, many buildings in China do not have a fourth floor or the number 4 in their addresses. The number 13 is also considered to be unlucky in Chinese culture, as it is in many other cultures around the world. This is because it is associated with bad luck and misfortune.

The Lucky Numbers

Conversely, the number 8 is considered to be a lucky number in Chinese culture. This is because the word for “eight” sounds similar to the Chinese word for “prosperity” or “wealth.” As a result, many Chinese people believe that the number 8 brings good luck and fortune. The number 9 is also considered to be lucky in Chinese culture, as it is associated with longevity and eternity.

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The Role of Unlucky Numbers in Everyday Life

Superstitions about unlucky numbers are deeply ingrained in Chinese culture. Many people go to great lengths to avoid these numbers, especially when it comes to important life events such as weddings, business deals, and even buying a house. It is not uncommon for people to pay extra money to have a lucky number included in their telephone number or license plate.

One key takeaway from this text is that numbers play a significant role in Chinese culture, and many of these numbers are believed to bring either good or bad luck. While there is no scientific evidence to support the belief in unlucky numbers, confirmation bias and cultural traditions keep these superstitions alive. Avoiding certain numbers can impact both business and personal life, with people going to great lengths to include lucky numbers in important events. It is important to recognize the role that superstitions play in shaping our beliefs and behavior.

The Impact on Business

The belief in unlucky numbers can have a significant impact on business in China. For example, a company may be reluctant to launch a product on the 4th of the month or to have a phone number that includes the number 4. Similarly, a real estate developer may have difficulty selling apartments on the 4th floor of a building.

The Influence on Personal Life

Unlucky numbers can also have an impact on personal life. For example, a couple may avoid getting married on the 4th or 13th of the month, and may even choose their wedding date based on lucky numbers. Parents may choose to name their children with lucky numbers in the hopes that it will bring them good fortune.

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The Scientific Explanation

While many people believe in the power of unlucky numbers, there is no scientific evidence to support these beliefs. The fear of unlucky numbers is a form of superstition, which is based on cultural traditions and beliefs rather than empirical evidence. However, superstitions can have a powerful psychological effect on people, influencing their behavior and decision-making.

The Role of Confirmation Bias

One explanation for the persistence of superstitions is confirmation bias. This is the tendency for people to seek out and interpret information in a way that confirms their existing beliefs. For example, if someone believes that the number 4 is unlucky, they may be more likely to notice negative events that occur on the 4th of the month and attribute them to the number 4.

The Influence on Culture

Superstitions about unlucky numbers are not unique to Chinese culture. Many cultures around the world have their own beliefs about lucky and unlucky numbers. However, the specific numbers that are considered lucky or unlucky can vary widely. For example, in Western cultures, the number 13 is considered to be unlucky, while in some African cultures, the number 7 is believed to be unlucky.

FAQs – What are the most unlucky numbers?

What is the meaning of unlucky numbers?

Unlucky numbers are numbers that are considered to bring bad luck or negative energy. Different cultures have different unlucky numbers, and the reasons for considering a particular number as unlucky also vary.

What are some of the most commonly considered unlucky numbers?

The unlucky numbers can vary depending on the culture and belief system. In Western cultures, the number 13 is considered unlucky, whereas in Chinese culture, the number 4 is viewed as unlucky as it sounds similar to the word for “death” in Chinese. In Italian culture, the number 17 is considered unlucky, as when the Roman numeral XVII is rearranged, it spells “VIXI,” which means “I have lived” in Latin and is associated with death.

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Why are some numbers considered unlucky?

Some numbers are considered unlucky because of superstitions or cultural beliefs. For example, the number 13 is thought to be unlucky because it was the number of people present at the Last Supper, and Judas, who betrayed Jesus, was the 13th guest. Similarly, the number 4 is considered unlucky in Chinese culture because it sounds similar to the word for “death” in Chinese.

Are there any lucky numbers?

Yes, many numbers are considered lucky in different cultures. In Chinese culture, the numbers 8 and 9 are considered lucky because they are associated with prosperity and longevity respectively. Similarly, the number 7 is considered lucky in many cultures, including Western culture, as it is associated with good fortune and perfection.

Is it important to consider unlucky numbers?

The significance of unlucky numbers varies from person to person and culture to culture. Some people strongly believe in the concept of unlucky numbers, while others do not give much attention to it. Ultimately, whether it is important to consider unlucky numbers or not depends on an individual’s belief system and cultural background.


Francis Bangayan Actually I'm an Industrial Management Engineering, BSc Mechanical, Computer Science and Microelectronics I'm Very Passionate about the subject of Feng and furthered my studies: Feng Shui Mastery Course Bazi Mastery Course Flying Stars Feng Shui Course 8 Mansions Feng Shui Course Studied with the most prestigious Feng Shui and Bazi Master in Malaysia and Singapore with Master Joey Yap and Master Francis Leyau and Master TK Lee

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