Superstitions originated perhaps, In superstition when man was at the mercy of the natural elements. He respected and worshiped the forces of nature like the sun, the moon, water etc. He worshiped fire because of its destructive ability.
When man started falling prey to diseases he started appeasing the gods with offerings, penances and sacrifices to ward off evil spirits in superstition. All civilizations have their respective superstitions. But some like beliefs in ghosts, sorcery, witchcraft and spirits are universal. The western civilizations although very progressive have their own superstitions. The number 13 is unlucky in the west because the Last Super Lord Jesus dined with his twelve disciples in superstition and later was crucified. Salt was spilled on the table on which they dined and therefore even now, spilling of salt is considered ominous in superstition .New England in America was infamous for its witches.
All women who were suspected of practicing witchcraft, were held to the stake and burnt alive in superstition. Later it was realized that such executions were carried out at the behest of some people who had some selfish motives in superstition.