Symbols of good luck

What symbols are lucky? What are most powerful good luck charms that work for success in an event, for business . . for life?

A symbol is something that represents a concept or an idea. Luck, on the other hand, is perceived as something which results in a good or fortunate outcome of an event: “Wow! That was lucky!” for example . . meaning that whatever just happened was a good thing and a happy result has occurred. Luck is symbolised in many ways – and by many different objects or things, often dependant on the culture where the symbol originated – its tradition, history, folklore, myth and religion. Symbols take many forms and symbols of good luck usually incorporate age-old figures or shapes that have a past relationship with good fortune.

Tortoise turtle good luck symbol
Lucky tortoise

Ancient good luck charms and beliefs

Many of us have knocked on wood (or “touched wood”) to try and avoid a bad event occurring when we feel that fate is lurking to make things turn bad. Indeed, fate itself is often conceived as a harbinger of good or bad luck – and by touching wood we are, in effect respecting this concept. This notion, and many others like them from around the world, are based on old customs and an esotericism handed down over the generations: Even nowadays, there are few people who will openly tempt fate: For example, so many people avoid the supposedly “unlucky” number 13 that it is often absent from the floor of a hotel or the seat number on a aeroplane. Consequently, human beings over the centuries have adopted certain traditions, symbols, charms, etc to try and attract good luck (and ward off misfortune): Four leaf clovers, Horseshoes, Ladybirds, Acorns, the lucky Indalo, and so on, even animals like the Turtle / Tortoise, Elephant, Pigs, etc.

Horseshoe clover good luck symbols
Lucky clover and horseshoe

So, we symbolise good luck with an object or thing and then carry that object around with us to hopefully promote good luck (and negate bad luck).

Many people including famous actors, politicians and sports people carry a lucky charm or talisman, or have one in their house, office or car. Yes, at some time in our lives, we will probably want to have a lucky charm or amulet. And we would not be alone: Millions of people around the world believe in good luck symbols – and wear one, because they BELIEVE it will be good for them. The British museum in London has a whole room full of good luck charms dating back centuries; Napoleon carried one, as did presidents Roosevelt and Obama. Michael Jordan, the ex-Chicago Bulls basketball player, spent his entire NBA career wearing his old University of North Carolina shorts under his team shorts – for good luck. And it is all about belief: As Henry Ford said: “If you think you can, you can. And if you think you can’t . . you’re right!”

Good luck charms that work

In fact, studies have shown that lucky charms boost people’s confidence and increase their chance of success. Tennessee Williams wrote: “Luck is believing you are lucky” and many people admit there is power in a thought made positive by a lucky charm symbol – being a continual reminder of purpose and desires.

Ladybird symbol of good luck
Lucky ladybird

One of the reasons we are so confident is that it has been proved that belief in a lucky charm and in the concept of good luck really does help people avoid bad luck: A while back, the University of Cologne published a report in the American Journal of Psychological Science which showed how superstition improved performance. And in 2004, researchers from the Universities of Edinburgh, in Scotland, and Hertfordshire, in England (including the well-renowned psychologist, Professor Richard Wiseman) conducted experiments relating to good fortune. They concluded that lucky charms really did make a difference. “Luck affects everything,” wrote Ovid.

How can I bring good luck into my life?

So-called ‘lucky’ people trust their intuition and gut feelings. They also look forward to the future because they assume it will be filled with good fortune or and this becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. But there’s more to it than that. Since lucky people are optimistic about how things will turn out, they tend to be positive in their interactions with others or and therefore foster the very conditions that make a positive outcome more likely. The people who believe they are lucky have greater success because the ‘lucky’ filter in their minds alerts them to seize the opportunity in front of them. And when they hit a bad patch? Well, because they always expect things to turn out well in the end, they’re able to ride things out until the tide turns in their favour. Which, of course, makes them remarkably resilient.

For many, it is convenient to carry a good luck symbol as a piece of jewellery . . a charm bracelet, a lucky symbol as a pendant on a necklace, a charm ring, and so on, to REMIND them of this.

Indalo good luck symbol ring
Lucky Indalo on this ring

What is the best good luck charm?

This good luck concept translates across from mere fancy into mysticism and even religion: The Sutras of Buddhism is one example; the Ancient Greek cultures that included Plato, Pythagoras, and Socrates is another where lucky charm bracelets were commonplace. The word charm actually wasn’t used until later Roman times (originating with the word “carmen” meaning the song or incantation that people used to chant over a talisman to give it power and to make it “charmed”). The charms on a charm bracelet are said to protect the wearer from harm, give them safekeeping, and bring them good fortune. People of many religions wear necklaces, bracelets or other charm jewellery to provide protection and ward off evil or “bad luck”. It is possible to view the Christian cross as another example of this, as is the Hamsa, the Ankh, the Star of David, Guardian Angels, the St Christopher, and such like. There are indeed many items that could be considered “lucky charms’.

St Christopher a good luck symbol
Saint Christopher – considered lucky by some

Some people put their faith in more ‘worldly’ symbols for thier faith in a good outcome to an event and choose to wear secular symbols for good luck, such as a 4-leafed Clover, a Horseshoe, an Indalo, etc.And there are lucky animal symbols too:

What animal represents good luck?

Many people choose jewellery featuring Owls and other creatures from the animal world like Butterflies, Turtles, Elephants, Geckos and so on, to represent their good luck wishes.

What are the signs of good luck?

Other people prefer celestial or astrological symbols, or precious / semi-precious gemstones as good luck charms, and many good luck necklaces, pendant, rings, bracelets, etc, feature a lucky star sign or stone.

Either way, belief in portents of good luck can be strong, and millions of people adhere to the principal of good luck symbols.

In the Far East, luck (and good fortune) is an integral part of the culture and daily life. Have you ever encountered the Maneki-Neko? This is the Japenese “Beckoning Cat” and it is a common Japanese lucky charm figurine or talisman which is believed to bring good fortune to its owner. This extremely popular good luck symbol is usually made of ceramic or plastic and it shows a cat (traditionally a calico Japanese Bobtail) beckoning with an upright paw. It is often displayed at the entrance to a businesses. Maneki-neko is the subject of a number of folklore tales explaining the cat’s origins. For example: The owner of an impoverished business like a shop, takes in a starving stray cat, despite barely having enough to feed himself. In gratitude, the cat sits in the front of the store beckoning customers inside, thus bringing prosperity as a reward to the charitable proprietor. Modern Japanese folklore suggests that keeping a talisman of good fortune, such as the Maneki-Neko, in bedrooms and places of study will bring about favorable results and life successes. The Pokémon named Meowth is based upon this Maneki-Neko.

Maneki-Neko good luck charm - symbol for success in business
Maneki-Neko good luck charm for success

During the spring exam time in Japan, people go to shrines and temples – but not to pray. They write their wishes on a wooden tablet called an ’ema’ that has a picture of a horse on the back, and then hang the tablet in the temple. Long ago, people believed that the Gods rode horses, and so an ema was a way of asking the Gods to come and help them. And, just like many other people throughout the world today, they really believe that it works. Children in school put lucky charms on their desks, attach them to cell phones, and so on. The point is – they BELIEVE it will bring them good fortune.

And who hasn’t heard of the Fortune Cookie? This is a biscuit containing a piece of paper with a prediction or message written on it, although this tends to be more about precicitng your future rather than luck per se, and is probably more at the ‘gimmicky’ end of the luck belief spectrum.

Good luck fortune cookie
Good luck fortune cookie

In Germany, they say: Viel glück (literally “Good Luck”) but they also say: Viel Erfolg which is more akin to “I wish you much success” or “Lots of success”. And this is the whole point about the “Good Luck” concept: We are passing on our best wishes to a friend or loved-one for success or achievement – especially in some life event like, for example, Moving House, Travelling, good luck wishes for an Exam, a Driving Test, an Interview, starting a new School, University of College, taking part in a Competition or sports Match, going to Hospital for an Operation, and so on. The list is endless, and we all do it, almost every day! This is where the concept of the good luck gift comes in.

We have LOTS of Good Luck Gifts for events like this in our shop

What things bring good luck?

Lots of people carry some sort of lucky charm (or object of religious faith or inspiration) to help their life go a little bit better. Once a person recognises the positive energy of a lucky object, they allow that object to realise it’s potential to do good . . it inspires them. So, to attract Good Luck, people equip themselves with these so-called Lucky Charms. Indeed, at some point in their lives, most people have possessed a good luck charm, amulet or talisman. This is particularly true amongst sports people, politicians and actors.

. . and we have many in our  shop  🙂

As you would imagine, our shop features lots of symbols of good luck, and a great number of them are on jewellery pieces such as good luck charm bracelets, necklaces, and so on. But we also stock other items (like our ceramics for example) which feature good luck symbols or, something symbolic of good luck (like a lucky ladybird).

And many people put their faith (or belief) in God (or a God): Religions around the world use their own symbols to help ward off evil spirits and bad luck, and to hopefully bring good fortune into peoples’ lives. Naturally, we also stock such products with mmore ‘religious’ symbols such as little Guardian Angels, the Scallop Shell, St Christopher pendants, and so on, that are based on religious beliefs – for the millions of people around the world that put their faith in God for good fortune in their lives.

See the  Faith Jewellery in our Good Luck Gift Shop  store

Belief in portents of good luck can be strong, and millions of people adhere to the principal of good luck symbols.