cheers to enlightenment!
I have lost count of the number of times I have gotten scolded for trying to use my left hand to do anything, even when my right hand is occupied, how many of you can relate?
Before the enlightenment that science brought linking left-handedness to brain anatomy in many cultures, being left handed was seen as being unlucky or being malicious; for goodness sake I got smacked for offering my left hand to collect something from an elder. Probably because I’m naturally right-handed, but it left me wondering if there was something wrong with the left hand. It so happens that in many cultures, it was a sign of disrespect and it reflected in language.
In French, ‘gauche‘ means left or clumsy.
Thank God for science. By the way, if you are naturally left-handed and was forced to start using your right hand, comment below.
Well, left-handedness has nothing to do with luck or maliciousness as many know now. Researchers who study human hand preference agree that the preferred hand (right or left) is produced by biological and most likely genetic causes (see explanation). However, there is a persistent presence of a left handed minority (about 15% of humans).
Someone is wondering when we will get to the scout hand shake part, lol. I was watching a movie and discovered in an organization (in the movie War room) it was customary if not mandatory to shake with your left hand. Having been smacked before, I was intrigued. The first time I noticed it in one of the scenes, I though both individuals were probably left handed, but then I noticed all the employees did the same thing. I was like…nah…there has to be a reason or at least a name for that.
Lo, its called the scout handshake, a part of me felt justified, lol. It so happens that there’s a historical fact to it as expected.
Scouts across the world all greet each other with a left-handed hand shake and its a sign of trust and friendship. Why though?, why not the right hand?, well, because the left hand is the closest to the heart.
The origin of the handshake is attributed to the Ashanti people (modern day Ghana). Their warriors held their shields with their left hand so when they lower it down to shake the left hand of the other person, it is a sign of trust.
History has it that Colonel Powell ( the founder of scouting) saluted them with his right hand but the Ashanti chiefs offered their left hand and said;
In our land, only the bravest of the brave shake hands with the left hand because we do not drop our shields and our protection.
They knew Baden Powell for his bravery because they had fought against and with him and were proud to offer him their left hand of bravery and trust. Interesting right?
Today, the handshake has been adopted by all scouts and in some organizations .
The right handed handshake also has its root in war (sword carrying). People were forced to be right handed by religion as it was the hand that held the sword.
When a passing person drew closer and no threat was perceived, the right hand would be offered free of any weapon. If the gesture is returned, the action is completed by grasping the hand of the passing person briefly. The depth of friendship determined the duration of the handshake.
Overtime, it has been adopted in everyday meetings between folks as a sign of mutual lack of hostility. The walls of enforced right handedness has slowly been brought down. Today, it is suggested that whoever offer a hand first should be equally met without comment; left or right because shaking hands in the first place coveys one message-lack of hostility
As always, the conversation continues in the comment section, tell me your thoughts, particularly if you were forced to be right-handed. Remember to like, share and sign up for more, ciao!