The history of the rabbit foot
It is thought that the notion of the lucky rabbit’s foot dates all the way back to 600 B.C. It was believed by animists that certain objects were bestowed with spiritual powers such as parts of different animals’ bodies.
Holding or carrying this particular object was thought to bring the carrier that animal’s strengths. In the case of the rabbit’s foot, it would have been the agility to move swiftly out of danger and to increase fertility. Two great attributes of the rabbit.
A symbol of hope
One of the most well-known facts about rabbits is their fantastic ability to breed bountifully. This fertility led to rabbits becoming symbols of hope, rejuvenation and prosperity in times of need. Having a rabbit’s foot would therefore bring you good luck in the form of food, family and fortune! Remember, it wasn’t that long ago that finding food was a major concern and worry for people. And reproducing and rearing children was a real struggle. So anything to ensure your children survived into adulthood, had enough food to eat and had sufficient shelter would be wholeheartedly welcomed.
In many cultures, a rabbit’s foot was believed to repel evil spirits and in some African-American cultures it was believed to contain magic and so was used in spells and voodoo practices. Some believe that the phase of the moon when the foot was obtained was significant to the amount of luck it would bring.
Others claim the notion of a rabbit’s foot being lucky stemmed from the idea that carrying one around was so horrible that it actually came almost full circle into being lucky. Have you ever seen a dog so ugly you thought it was cute? It’s the same principle.
The rabbit’s foot today
The practice of using a rabbit’s foot for luck has pretty much disappeared in the modern era. When it is used it’s usually simply as a talisman and today’s rabbit feet are thankfully almost always 100% synthetic! Some still do adhere to the superstition that rubbing a rabbit’s foot can bring luck before a big event such as an exam or job interview – but for the most part the rabbit’s foot is nothing more than a bygone symbol.
What do you think of the rabbit’s foot? Do you think there’s anything lucky or significant about carrying one? Is it an Easter tradition of yours? Let us know if you believe in the magic of a rabbit’s foot or if you use it in any of your meditation & healing practices.