Article by Craig Hamilton-Parker.
Psychic Love Charms and Protective Talismans
The most powerful of charms are talismans. A talisman is any physical object that stores and radiates magical energy to create change or provide protection. Sometimes worn as a pendant, they often contain magical symbols or number sequences. The use of talismans appears to date back to early man.
Talismans are objects that embody an innate magical power that is transmitted to the possessor. Talismans are frequently confused with amulets, which passively protect the owner from evil and harm. Usually, the singular function of a talisman is to make powerful transformations possible, but both amulet and talisman are used as protection.
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In ancient Egypt, the frog protected fertility, the Udjat Eye brought good health, and the scarab beetle symbolized resurrection. Two of the most notable amulets of ancient Egypt are the Eye of Horus and the Ankh. These symbols were believed to protect the wearer from evil.
The Arabs also had their protective amulets and, in particular, wore small sacks containing dust from tombs to protect them from evil. Similarly, the Hebrews wore crescent moons to ward off the evil eye, and attached bells to their garments to ward off evil spirits.
Eye & Phallic Love Talismans
Two of the most common cross-cultural symbols of amulets are the eye and phallic symbols. As eyes are thought to protect against evil spirits, they are found on tombs, walls, utensils, and jewels. Since ancient times, the phallic symbol, represented by horns and hands, has stood for protection against the evil eye. Similarly, the names of God and magical words and numbers have generally been thought to provide protection, so have been made into amulets.
Renaissance versions were accompanied by books of magical instruction called grimoires. Grimoires offered instructions on the making of talismans. Talismans were often inscribed on precious stones or parchment under auspicious astrological signs. They were used for getting rich, winning at gambling, falling in love, safeguarding against sudden death, improving memory, and even making a good speech.
Certain shapes have protective power. For example, the pentagram has been a protective sign against evil powers in the West and in Japan. In Nordic countries, it is found drawn on the doors of barns and storehouses to ward off trolls and invoke protecting powers. Similarly, the Star of David (also known as the shield of David) is an ancient protective symbol that is believed to date as far back as 800600 B.C. The shape occurs today on Icelandic police badges and is echoed in the star found on the badges of some U.S. sheriffs.
One of the most powerful amulets to be worn as a pendant is Sator-Rotas Square. It was discovered scratched on a wall in the buried city of Pompeii and dates back to the first century AD. Because of the hidden anagram, Pater Noster, the square was originally thought to be of Christian design, but there is strong evidence that it predates Christianity and refers to the ancient God, Mithras.
This Persian God is usually depicted with a lion’s head, and wings. Mithras was the defender of light and truth and protector from evil. The Sator-Rotas Square is supposed to protect against sorcery, poisonous air, colic, and pestilence; and keep cow’s milk safe from witchcraft. It was believed that the square had magical properties and that making it visible would ward off evil spirits. They are available today from many New Age shops and websites.
Talismans and protective power
It is claimed that the Viking runes also bring protective power. A technique is to draw the runes onto the body with blood or, in the case of a fertility charm, to carve the runes on a piece of cheese and then eat it.
For personal protection, one of the most used is the symbol ægishjálmr which, literally translated, means “helm of awe” or “helm of terror.” One of these “helms” is claimed to imbue the owner with the power to strike paralyzing fear into the heart of an enemy. This runic symbol can be a powerful form of personal protection, and it is sometimes worn as a tattoo.
Many pagans wore figurines of their gods as amulets; similarly, bits of paper containing quotes from holy books are carried in pouches or worn in jewels. The remnant of this custom continues in the Catholic religion where some members still wear scapulars and medals of the saints. For example, Catherine de Medici, queen consort of Henry II of France, wore a medal made from metals melted together during favorable astrological signs and mixed with human and goat’s blood.
Although the original was broken at her death, a copy exists in the Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris. On one side of the medal is engraved the god Jupiter, the eagle of Ganymede, and a demon with the head of the Egyptian god Anubis. On the reverse is a Venus figure, believed to be Catherine, flanked by demons. She believed the talisman protected her and gave her clairvoyance and sovereign power.
Charms & Love Charms
When I was a child, I remember being fascinated by the rabbit’s foot that my grandfather kept on his key ring. He had told me it was to bring good luck and keep evil away. The foot of a rabbit is a good luck charm around the world.
It had its origin in the fact that young rabbits are born with their eyes open, thus able to “see off” evil from the moment they come into the world. Some mothers believe that brushing their newborn baby with a rabbit’s foot will protect it from lifelong harm. Poachers believe that if they carry a rabbit’s foot in their pocket, they will never be caught.
Many strange superstitions persist in our society, and they come from many different traditions. One of my favorites, from Germany, advises us to wear our pockets inside out to ward off evil. Germans also say that if you are bewitched, you should boil a beef heart and, while it is cooking, keep sticking it with a needle.
The witch will have the same pains, and the spell upon you will be broken. Another useful German remedy says that if you put a pair of scissors under your pillow, open with the points towards the head of the bed, no one can harm you or bewitch you.
It works, but you may lose an ear in the process! (A recent survey found that Germany is the most superstitious European country, with one in three Germans believing in luck and charms. Britain and America follow close behind.)
White Magic – Protective Charms & Spells
One of the most well-known protective charms is the horseshoe, which brings good luck not only because it is shaped like a C to represent Christ and its curved shape symbolizes the heavens. The shoe is seen as being forged in the sacred fires and made from the sacred metal iron. No doubt, it fascinated early man, seeing a shoe nailed on to protect a horse’s foot yet the animal felt no pain.
These good luck charms are said to ward off evil and attract good fortune. The most common ones, and often found on charm bracelets, including crossed fingers, a clover leaf, a shoe, the crescent moon, dice, a dog, wheel, toadstool, and the three monkeys: hear no evil, see no evil, and speak no evil. The most popular lucky charm of all is the figure of St. Christopher.
Some of America’s most interesting superstitions come from the Irish. For example, St. Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland and is said to have driven the “snakes,” i.e. the devil, from Ireland. We have adopted the shamrock (and in its rare form, the four-leaf clover) as a symbol of the “luck of the Irish,” as clover grows plentiful in the green hills of Ireland.
This Irish protective and lucky symbolism is now celebrated once a year on St. Patrick’s Day and persists in the form of a famous cereal that includes moons, stars, hearts, and clovers.
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