Friday, January 13, 2012

Enough about Friday the 13th

OK, so here’s the deal, all day long and all weekend long most of the cable networks and pay per view channels will be emphasizing every Friday the 13th movie ever made as well as all the Jason, Alien and Psycho franchise movies as well. The whole emphasis will be about evil, murder, mayhem and people becoming psychotic. In so many ways and on so many levels this is both sad and wrong.
I for one as a pastor, theologian, counselor and psychologist absolutely resent this whole evil emphasis about a very important religious and historical event as well as the associated negative mental health connotations.
Now that doesn’t mean I dislike the occasional walk on the dark side or the good horror movie from time to time. I saw all of the Alien movies, loved Attack of the Killer Tomatoes as well as The Birds and original Psycho; so don’t think I’m simply seeking out the proverbial “rainbows and unicorn”  genre for everyone.
Just because it's Friday the 13th however, does not mean the day is bad, evil or that you're more likely to have a major accident.
For those who are extremely paranoid, they do have a more significant chance of minor to large accidents happening throughout the day. Their chances for impending doom are greater personally because they’ll be so busy trying to avoid calamity that they’ll walk right into it.
Authorities tell us that just like a full moon, due to this paranoia of Friday the 13th mentality, emergency rooms are fuller, emergency response teams and first responders are busier, DUIs and DWIs increase and violence as a whole is more prevalent due to Friday the 13th parties, bar and pub specials,etc.
In other words, these increases have nothing to do with the date and yet everything to do with the date simply because of the fear and anxiety of people over the day itself. Most of the fear however in recent years is the result of movies on impressionable young minds.
Historically and religiously Friday the 13th is a very sad and serious day which many tend to forget. Although the facts were a bit distorted and exaggerated, most wouldn’t even be aware of the historical side apart from the movie, “The DaVinci Code” based on the book of the same name by Dan Brown. It was on Friday, October 13th, 1307 that Politics and Christianity had one of the greatest confrontations ever.
King Phillip IV of France set his sights on the fabled riches of the Knights Templar (by all accounts the first bankers of the western world) who were constantly traveling back and forth to the mid-east, Holy Land and some think possibly even North America near Nova Scotia.
The Templar’s, although often at odds with the church were also loyal to their belief in Christ and as such (at least to some degree) their allegiance to the Pope.
King Phillip IV of France set a trap for the Templar’s issuing warrants for their arrest on Friday, October 13th, 1307 in which the original plan was to torture them, get confessions out of them forcing Pope Clement the V to issue more arrest for others and ultimately find the Templar treasure and King Phillip and France to become the ruling bank throughout Europe.
The Templar’s true to their faith refused, accepted torture and only acknowledged partial facts never leading to the location to this day where the treasure was.
Here is where the history gets somewhat unclear.  Although apparently 625 Knights Templar were arrested, by many accounts, not all were imprisoned, many escaped and some were even freed.
In a second attempt to get hold of the treasure, King Phillip ordered the slow and agonizing execution by burning at the stake of fifty four of the Templar. Some historians state this did not happen until 1310 while others want to put the event within the Friday, October 13th, 1307 date.
Regardless, of what or how things went down for the Knights Templar, Politics and the Christian church it was a very bad and sad day.
So that's the “skinny” as they say on Friday the 13th.  Have a safe and wonderful day.

©Copyright 2012 Dr. Lee W. Outlaw III


Anonymous said...

Dr Lee ~ oh this was such a great Article. I never fell into Superstition. But all my Life people would run for the Hills and TV Channels would capitalize on the innate fear of the masses brainwashed enough to believe that a date or month or year could actually affect our lives cataclysmically as to almost Signal the End of Times.

Also, as always, I learn something new every time you post, because I didn't know Fri 13th had significant religious connotations. How in the world did that ever get twisted? Do you know the same thing happened to the holiday for kids, Halloween? I think I remember one of your Articles in Oct for that as well, for your research led us to understand that it wasn't a scary day at all and couldn’t be further from the Truth as far as Ghosts, Goblins, Witches and Warlocks coming to eat us alive. You told us that actually, Halloween had significant meaning in the time of the Pilgrims or something like that? I may have the historical period wrong, but you catch my drift.

Anyway, Dr Lee, happy Fri 13th and don't walk under a Ladder, leave your hat on the bed, and if you see a solid black cat across the road in front of you, by all means back up and go another direction. LOL, just kidding of course. Other myths and nursery rhymes I've heard since a child and didn't fall for it then, either. As a matter of fact, I looked for that Ladder and circled beneath it, around it, climbed it to the top and back down; I not only threw my hat on the bed, I sat on it too. And as far as the black cat, I stopped, picked it up to see if it had an identification collar and if so, called the rightful owners. If it didn't, I took the poor thing to the Local Animal shelter to see if it was reported missing, begging the staff that in the allotted time no owners came forth to claim this Cat, that I would gladly take it home and give it a nice life and make it forget that all those people that passed it up or turned around were the result of a warped belief in Fri 13th. Or, if the owners were on the cat Tag, I called them promptly to come pick up their lost and frightened feline.

Needless to say, I've been owned by multiple black cats in my lifetime. I'm owned by a beautiful neutered Ebony Black cat right now who I love dearly. His name is Darth Vader, lol.

Lee Outlaw said...

Thank you Susan, I value your very thoughtful comments. Like me I do know you are a very busy person with all of your writing and other responsibilities, so thank you for taking the time to read and then comment. Oh my, what a wonderful comment. You know, I am still superstitious about the whole "hat on the bed" thing; just raised that way and would never think to do it. Of course the hat on the bed is another entire story. Thanks again.

Deborah Brooks-Langford said...

Gee how did I miss this article Dr. Lee. this is great.. I guess I have been busy at the hospital.. You write so well.. You are inspiring ..