According to Huffington Post writer Donna Henes, shooting stars symbolize good luck and protection. Ancient Romans thought that shooting stars were pieces of a heavenly shield that was protecting the world. Some cultures consider them sacred objects and divine gifts.
Ancient civilizations saw divinity in meteorites or shooting stars. Aborigines believed that shooting stars helped the dead climb up to heaven. Anatolians believed that the meteorite was the symbol of the Goddess Cybele. Greeks kept meteorites in both the Temple of Venus in Cyprus and the Temple of Apollo at Delphi; they called the meteorites Zeus-fallen things. A very old meteorite on display at the Liverpool City Museum came from a headdress fashioned for the statue of the Goddess Diana located at the ancient Greek city of Ephesus. The Black Stone is a meteorite that sits on the sacred shrine of Mecca. A brotherhood of Muslims, called the Sons of the Old Woman, watch after the stone.
In reality, shooting stars are nothing more than meteors that strike the Earth's atmosphere as the planet moves through space debris. Those meteors that manage to penetrate the atmosphere without burning up are called meteorites. Out of the millions of meteors that bombard the Earth on a regular basis only about 150 per year make it to the planet's surface.