Why Say “God Bless You” After A Sneeze?

Are you someone who says “God Bless You” after you hear someone sneeze?  Have you ever ask yourself when and why do people say it?   Well… people have been saying the term “God Bless You” after hearing someone sneeze dating back as early as 77 AD.   During this period of time, people believed that when someone sneezed, their soul was trying to escape their body and the person must be blessed so the soul can return quickly.  Later in histroy according to the National Geographic research team, during the plague of 590 AD, Pope Gregory I (photo above) ordered unceasing prayer for divine intercession.  One of the Pope’s commands was that anyone sneezing be blessed immediately (‘God Bless You’), since sneezing was usually the first sign that someone was becoming ill to the plague.   By 750 AD, it became common to say “God Bless You” as a response to someone sneezing.  Today, many believe it necessary to say God Bless You when someone sneezes because it is believed that a persons heart stops beating during the sneeze.   However, this too is not true.  It has been proven that electrical activity in your heart does not stop beating during the sneeze.  I guess when its all said and done, it never hurt to ask God to Bless someone.  Happy Sneezing.  
Photo Resource:  www.catholic.org