Why are Clocks Stopped & Antique Mirrors Covered When Someone Dies?

Antique Mirrors
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Fried Green Tomatoes is an interesting movie made in 1991. It is based on a book, written by Fannie Flagg with the title Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Café. The story is about two best friends and how they share all of their experiences in life. The main story is about how they open up a café that becomes famous for its barbecue and fried green tomatoes that are deliciously yummy.

In the movie, a character by the name of Ruth passes away due to cancer. No matter how many times you watch the scene it will always make you emotional. The interesting thing is that as Ruth dies, Sipsey who happens to be in the same room covers up the mirror and stops the clock. Sipsey has a very superstitious personality in the entire movie.

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I was always kind of curious about why people did things like these. I always thought that it probably had something to do with folklore, superstitions, or the beliefs you have as a child. But I started to dig deeper to find out much more that would soon surprise me.

Superstitious Origins

Some of the superstitions of stopping clocks and covering up antique mirrors at the time of someone’s demise originate from Germany and Great Britain. There are also indications that these superstitions could have originated from the Creole tribe. Irrespective of the origins of these superstitions. There is a point of view that covering mirrors and stopping clocks eases the journey of the soul and could be a blessing for the mourners.  

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Some Assumptions Why A Mirror is Covered

Some cultures believe that a mirror is a door to another dimension. It is the reason why a lot of horror movies also have mirrors. They believe that the soul departs the body at the time of death. The soul starts to look for where to go as it leaves the body.  

The soul could enter into a mirror and accidentally become trapped. If it gets trapped inside a mirror it could haunt the people living in that house for the rest of eternity. Some people cover their mirrors just so they do not have to see themselves mourning. It allows them to liberate their feelings of grief and lament over the death.

Other cultures believe that the Angel of Death captures the soul and can leave through the mirror. No one can see the Angel of Death but you could die if you tried to look at it. People with these beliefs often cover their mirrors for a longer time like 3 days. They will often go next door or to the nearest barbershop to look in the mirror.

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Interesting Beliefs About Death

There is a belief that as you should take the body of the deceased outside the main house door feet first. Going out the door headfirst, the dead person can look back into the house and take someone else along with them. Regardless of what you believe you should always respect everyone’s beliefs.

Everyone has a different way of mourning the loss of a loved one. People are the most vulnerable when exposed to death. Always let everyone take their own time to deal with the loss in their way.

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