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Fact Checks to Bust These 10 Solar Eclipse Myths

Celestial bodies are best described as “mysterious” to the limitation of human knowledge. Stars, planets, and other celestial bodies always leave us amazed. The two most intriguing aspects of it are the Sun and Moon, which are also integral parts of our daily life. In our childhood, we all were curious to know more about these celestial bodies when our science teacher used to describe them, right? But, then, our elders have different theories on the same, agreed? So, what to really believe? Obviously, experimented and thoroughly studied proofs that are presented by science.

Solar Eclipse of the Decade was on December 26, 2019

The world is witnessing the beautiful “Solar Eclipse of the Decade”, on December 26, 2019. In India, the solar eclipse will be visible in cities like Kannur, Kochi, Kozhikode, Thiruvananthapuram of Kerala, Ooty, Trichy, Madurai, and Chennai of Tamil Nadu, Mangalore and Bengaluru of Karnataka, and Union Territory of Puducherry. These are the places where the solar eclipse will be completely visible. This is an Annular Solar Eclipse where Moon’s usual diameter is smaller than the Sun’s where the moon blocks most of the light of the Sun and forms a ring-like formation that is named as Annulus. It is also called Fire-Ring. The solar eclipse will begin at 8 am and end at 1:30 pm. Also, It will be visible in India, Australia, the Philippines, Saudi Arabia, and Singapore.

What is Solar Eclipse?

A Solar Eclipse is a moment when Moon gets in the way of the Sun’s light and its shadow is experienced on Planet Earth. During the period, the moon moves over the Sun and it gets dark. There are four different types of solar eclipses, namely Partial eclipse, Annular eclipse, Total Eclipse, and Hybrid Eclipse

One should Not Eat or Drink During the Solar Eclipse

Indian food that shouldn't eat during solar eclipse

There are several myths circulated and believed by people, one of the most apparent is “one should not eat food or drink” during the Solar Eclipse. But, one should really cross-check it to facts that are backed by science. Source

Take the Bath in the Ganges and Wash Away Your Sins

There is a strong belief, especially amongst Indian origin people that taking a dip into the sacred river Ganges during the Solar Eclipse will wash away all the sins that one has done till the date in his/her life. However, science does not support such a type of myth. Source

Pregnant Women are Advised to Stay in Their Homes

In India, families also do not take a chance of not believing the myth that during the Solar Eclipse, pregnant women should be more careful about her movements and better do not get out of the house. This might be a myth and it does not get any support from modern science. Source

Carib Tribe of Suriname, South America believes that Sun and Moon are Brothers

If we talk about the myths popular outside India, then there is this Caribs Tribe, situated in Suriname of South America which believes that Sun and Moon are two brothers and whenever any eclipse occurs, it means one of the two brothers might be knocking to any of them. However, science has a different take on it. Source

A Solar Eclipse can Affect You if Your Birthday is on the Same Date

It is also believed that if the Solar Eclipse takes place within six months before or on your birthday, you will experience bad health. However, one should not believe the same as this is not backed by science. Source

Solar Eclipse Poisons the Food

There are also some of the places where people believe that during a Solar Eclipse, the prepared food might turn into poison, thus people are advised to safely preserve it or keep it under a drape that is not affected by the Sun. But, one should not believe these myths blindly better take a trustworthy reference approved by science. Source

Solar eclipses do not produce harmful radiation that can damage food. Radiation produced by the sun does not become more harmful during a solar eclipse.

NASA said that “If that were the case, the same radiation would harm the food in your pantry, or crops in the field”. Source

Solar Eclipse is a Harbinger of Bad Luck

Especially in India, it is believed that the occurrence of Solar Eclipse may cause some bad omen in one’s life. By the way, it is not backed by science. Source

North and South Poles do Not Experience the Solar Eclipse

Though, there is no proof to back up this myth that North and South poles do not get affected by, or experience Solar Eclipse. According to scientists, there is no difference that these poles experience, it equally gets affected as other astronomical standpoints. Source

Ritual of Banging Pots and Pans and Making Loud Noises to Keep Away the Demons

According to Hindu Mythology, there was an event where Sun and Moon chased Rahu when he has drunk the gods’ nectar. Meanwhile, the supreme Lord Vishnu beheaded him by his “Sudarshan Chakra”. But, his head roamed across the sky chasing the sun and the moon. Somehow, he catches the sun and swallows it. Because, Rahu did not have his body attached with his head, the sun slips and places somewhere in the sky. This is also the reason behind banging the pots and pans and making loud noises to keep the demons away.

Are There Actually Any Fire Eaters?

In Vietnam, it is believed that a frog or toad eats the moon or sun that causes the Solar Eclipse. However, it is not proved by any of the authentic resources provided by science. Source

The Only Effect by Solar Eclipse Supported by NASA

Do Solar Eclipse affect the Eyes or cause blindness?

According to NASA, it can affect your eyes or can cause retinal damage, when you look at Partial eclipse, thus it is instructed to wear safety equipment such as solar glasses or a pinhole projector before looking at it. However, during the Total Eclipse when the Moon completely covers the Sun, it is safe to watch the eclipse from naked eyes. Source

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--- Published By  Jyoti Kumar