Don’t sleep with a mirror/computer screen/TV screen/ or alarm clock facing or around your head, because they rob you of your sleep


The subject told me that she learned this from her neighbor when she was complaining about insomnia problems. Her neighbor told asked her if she had anything near her head when she spoke, things like computer screens, TVs, alarm clocks, etc. When the subject responded yes, the neighbor told her that those were bad omens and that they stole your sleep from you. The subject told me that she took the things away from her head, and placed them at the foot of her bed and she was able to sleep a lot easier. Her neighbor did not tell her what culture is responsible for this superstition.

This particular piece of folklore reminded me of the dream catcher idea, which is a part of Native American folklore. A dream catcher is a hanging woven net-like piece that hangs above your bed with the intention of catching nightmares. This idea of different items stealing your dreams sort of relates to this idea of a net to catch dreams. This piece of folklore also brings up the idea that it is widely believed that you should not watch TV or be on the computer before you go to bed because the lights are harsh on your eyes, and when you do go to bed it takes awhile for your eyes to adapt to the darkness and thus takes you longer to go to sleep. This superstition could have grown from this belief. I also think that this superstition brings about the motif of man vs. technology. This motif is often found in literature, and basically represents this conflict between man and nature with technology. Basically, man is always reluctant of technology because it contrasts with the traditional ways. I think this superstition represents a hestitance to accept the new ways of technology. And through prohibiting the use of TV, computers, and alarm clocks, the old ways of going to bed with complete darkness without anything to disrupt you are still withheld. The technology age is hitting fast with the prominence of everything digital in our world today, and this superstition seems to be rooted against it. Personally I have to have my alarm clock near my head so that I make sure to hear it in order to get up.

The idea of the mirror however does not relate to this reluctance of technology, and therefore I believe that mirror’s significance is that it reflects your world. I think that the mirror is a distraction because it gives you your reflection and you can be distracted from sleeping as you watch in your mirror your inverted world. There are numerous superstitions revolved around mirrors as well, so I believe that this is yet another one obsessed with mirrors. The most common of mirror superstitions is the one that if you break a mirror you will have seven years of bad luck. This bad luck idea generally holds mirrors as a positive force, however the above stated superstition portrays mirrors as bad things, stealing sleep. I am not quite sure of the reason why mirrors are held in such different lights, but perhaps it has to do with the mysterious nature of the mirror.