Original Text: INFORMANT: “I am a huge believer that 11:11 is good luck. When I was like in 8th grade, for anything that I really wanted, I would wait until exactly 11:11 and just think about my wish over and over again during the full minute. And I have several examples of those things actually coming true. When I was in 8th grade, I really wanted to get into a performing arts high school, and I wished on 11:11 every night and day after my auditions for it, and I got in! You have to do it for the full minute though, or else it wont work. And specifically 11:11 is the number that works, not any other numbers. Now I don’t do it as intensely, but like if I do see that it’s 11:11, I’ll think of something random to put out into the universe, because I think it will come back to me.”
Context: The informant is an 18-year-old female first year at USC. She is half-Indian and half-American. She firmly believes in karma and manifestation, and 11:11 is a tangible number with magical energy that she can use to manifest. The fact that it has brought her good things in the past further solidifies her belief in it. She does not recall where she learned this from but thinks she probably saw it online when she was in 8th grade. She still continues this magic ritual today.
Analysis: Wishing on 11:11 is a widely spread belief amongst many cultures, and cannot be pinned down to a single origin. Repeated numbers like 1111 are often called angel numbers, a belief rooted in numerology, which was supposedly invented by Pythagorus in Ancient Greece. It is believed that certain numbers have a specific vibration or magic that can be used to make things happen. Numerology is widely spread in India where the informant is from, but it has also worked its way into Western culture. 1111 has no specific meaning because different people have different thoughts on it, but it is generally agreed that it is a sign of growth, power, new beginnings, or spiritual support. Given these general meanings, it makes sense that the informant would use the particular magic energy of 1111 (versus other angel numbers) to channel into an arts high school acceptance, for example. Manifestation is also a popular belief in India. Posting 11:11 on your Snapchat story was a popular thing to do in 2016-2019 (ish) to bring about luck or love, which might have been an influence on the informant as an 8th grader during those years.