The Superstition Episode

Ep. 160: From warding off the evil eye to rules about whistling, why superstitions remain such an ingrained part of Jewish life

December 6, 2018

From warding off the evil eye to rules about whistling, Jews are serious about their superstitions. This week on Unorthodox, we hear from listeners about their family customs, talk to Tablet’s editor-in-chief Alana Newhouse about the enduring nature of shtetl superstitions, and take a visit to a very lucky spot in Northern Israel. Ptui ptui!

We love to hear from you. Send comments and questions for Unorthodox to [email protected] or leave a message at our new listener line: 914-570-4869.

Want more Unorthodox in your life? Follow us on Twitter and Instagram to see what happens behind the scenes! Show your love for Unorthodox with our new T-shirts, sweatshirts, and baby onesies. Get yours here.

This episode is sponsored by:

Belvedere Vodka, certified kosher by the Orthodox Union, and produced in accordance with the legal requirements of Polish Vodka. Learn more here.

JNF Jewish National Fund, making an impact on Israel with a vision that encompasses planting trees, building water reservoirs, helping those with special needs, preserving heritage sites, and transforming the North and South with new housing, job creation, and infrastructure development. As you plan your year-end giving, go to to take part in fulfilling that vision.

JChef, the new kosher meal kit. Go to and use coupon code Unorthodox30 to get 30 percent off your first order.

Harry’s, for a great shave at a great price. Get $5 dollars off a shave set, including the limited-edition holiday sets, when you go to

Unorthodox is a smart, fresh, fun weekly take on Jewish news and culture hosted by Mark Oppenheimer, Stephanie Butnick, and Liel Leibovitz. You can listen to individual episodes here or subscribe on iTunes.

More Unorthodox
See all