The Talisman is an object marked with magic signs and is believed
to give its bearer supernatural powers and/or protection. Virtually
every religion in human history has offered as adherents small
decorative objects intended for good luck, protection from harm,
success and healing.
Talismans and Amulets - Introduction
A Talisman is a small amulet* or other object, often
bearing magical symbols, worn for protection against evil
spirits or the supernatural.
*An amulet ( [Pliny], meaning "an object that protects a person
from trouble"), a close cousin of the talisman (from Arabic tilasm, ultimately from Greek
telesma or from the Greek word "talein"
which means "to initiate into the mysteries") consists of any
object intended to bring good luck and/or protection to its owner.
Potential amulets include: gems or simple stones, statues,
coins, drawings, pendants, rings, plants, animals, etc.; even
words said in certain occasions, for example: vade retro satana (Latin,
"go back, Satan"), to repel evil or bad luck.
Amulets and talismans vary considerably according to their time
and place of origin. In many societies, religious objects serve as
amulets. A religious amulet might be the figure of a certain god or
simply some symbol representing the deity (such as the cross for
Christians or the "eye of Horus" for the ancient Egyptians).
Eye of Horus pendant
Thailand one can commonly see people with more than one Buddha
hanging from their necks; in Bolivia and some places in Argentina
the god Ekeko furnishes a standard amulet, to whom one should offer
at least one banknote to obtain fortune and welfare.
Every zodiacal sign corresponds to a gem that acts as an
amulet, but these stones vary according to different traditions.
Birthstone, any of various gems associated with the
Astrology and Alchemy Basics
The image above illustrates the basic principle behind
creation of a natal chart. In this example, only inner planets are
shown. The appearance of the zodiac constellations is not affected
by the annual motion of earth because they are very, very far.Â
Note: The image is not to scale.Â
Enlarge this picture.
An ancient tradition in China involves capturing a cricket alive and keeping it in an osier box to attract good luck (this
tradition extended to the Philippines). Chinese may also spread
coins on the floor to attract money; rice also has a reputation as a
carrier of good fortune.
Turtles and cactus can cause controversy, for while some
people consider them beneficial, others think they delay everything
in the house.
In Afro-Caribbean syncretic religions like Voodoo, Umbanda,
Quimbanda and SanterÃa, drawings are also used as amulets, such as
with the veves of Voodoo; these religions also take into account the
colour of the candles they light, because each colour features a
different effect of attraction or repulsion.
Perfumes and essences (like incense, myrrh, etc.) also serve the
purposes of attraction or repulsion. Popular legends often
attributed magical powers to certain unusual objects, such as a
baby's caul or a rabbit's foot; possession of these items allegedly
endowed their magical abilities upon their owners.
In Central Europe, people believed garlic kept vampires away,
and so did a crucifix.
The ancient Egyptians had many amulets for
different occasions and needs, often with the figure of a god or the
"ankh" (the key of eternal life); the figure of the
scarab god Khepri became a common amulet too and has now gained renewed fame
around the Western world.
Genuine Egyptian Scarab
A Genuine Scarab beetle with a real Scarab beetle
that was born and died naturally!!! The Scarab Beetle is one of
the most common symbols in ancient Egyptian amulets and art works.
The scarab beetle has a famous habit of rolling balls of dung into
small holes in the ground, laying its eggs inside the balls so
that the larvae could use them for food. When the dung was
consumed and the young beetles came out the Egyptians considered
it a "spontaneous creation" thus worshipping this beetle as the
god "Khepera", meaning "The one who came forth" â the creator god
Atum. In ancient Egypt they used to use amulets containing the
beetle, placing them on the chests of mommies, close to the heart.
The winged Scarab beetle
was to ensure a safe passage to the world of the gods, rebirth and
good luck in both present and after life.
The Hebrew writing on the back of the pendant says "Amon
Rah untill infinity" ("Amon Rah millyonei shanim", in
Hebrew). This phrase, taken from the Egyptian tradition,
symbolizes the belief in the eternality of the soul.
For the ancient Scandinavians, Anglo-Saxons and Germans and
currently for some Neopagan believers the rune Eoh (yew) protects
against evil and witchcraft; a non-alphabetical rune representing
Thor's hammer still offers protection against thieves in some
Deriving from the ancient Celts, the clover, if it has four
leaves, symbolizes good luck (not the Irish shamrock, which
symbolizes the Christian Trinity). In the Celtic tradition a bag
made from a crane skin (called a crane bag) symbolized treasure,
wheel symbolized the sun, a boat also was a sun symbol, but also a
death symbol (to the land of the dead), the raven was a symbol of
death, the head was a symbol of wisdom as was the acorn and a well.
Corals, horseshoes and lucky bamboo also allegedly make good
Figures of elephants are said to attract good luck and money
if one offers banknotes to them.
The lucky elephant charm is a deliberate bit of
cultural exoticism found in America and Europe. Historically linked
to to the era of British colonialism in India, it entered popular
culture folk-magic during the late 19th century and probably reached
its apotheosis in the 1930s, when lucky elephant charms and
knick-knacks were all the rage in the United States, Canada, and
The origins of the lucky elephant charm can be found in the Hindu
religion of India. There, the god
the elephant-headed son of
is worshipped as an opener of the way and luck-god.
has his own iconography in India, and his best-known symbol is the
which was also popular as a luck-symbol in America, at least until
the Nazis corrupted its referential connotations.
In Arab countries a hand with an eye amid the palm and two
thumbs (similar to a Hand of Fatima) serves as protection against
In India and Tyrol, small bells make demons escape when they
sound in the wind or when a door or window opens.
Amulets are also worn on the upper right arm to protect the
person wearing it.
In fact this method was more popular in ancient
India then wearing it as a pendant or around the neck.
Buddhism has a deep and ancient talismanic tradition. In the
earliest days of Buddhism, just after the Buddha's death circa 485
B.C., amulets bearing the symbols of Buddhism were common. Symbols
such as conch shells, the footprints of the Buddha, and
others were commonly worn.
After about the 2nd century B.C., Greeks began carving actual images
of the Buddha. These were hungrily acquired by native Buddhists in
India, and the tradition spread.
Another aspect of amulets connects with demonology and
demonolatry; these systems consider an inverted cross (not an upward
cross, which drives demons away) or pentagram in downward position
as favorable to communicate with demons and to show friendship
During the tumultuous Plains Indians troubles in mid-19th century
America, the Lakota Tribe adopted the Ghost Dance ritual, created by
a Paiute Indian living in northwestern Oregon. Black Elk, the great
Lakota Holy Man, received instructions on how to create a
talismanic shirt that would protect the Lakota from the Greedy White
Man's bullets. Tragically, the shirts failed to offer the Lakota
In addition to protection against supernatural powers, amulets
are also used for protection against other people. For example,
soldiers and those involved in other dangerous activities may use
talismans to increase their luck. Carlist soldiers wore a medal
of the Sacred Heart of Jesus with the inscription Â¡Detente bala!
Amulets can be found among people of every nation and social
status. They can be seen in jewellery, artisan fairs, museums,
shops, and homes.
The word talisman also describes a number of consecrated magical
objects used in Hermeticism.
Instructions for how to create a talisman can be commonly found
in Grimoires. These talismans, sometimes called pentacles, were
usually either made to protect the wearer from various influences of
disease and other forms of danger or to protect the wearer from
demons and to seal a certain demon under the users control.
A common version of the later talisman is known as the Seal of
Solomon. This became an extremely important talisman due to the
legend that Solomon used demons to create Solomon's temple and was
protected by a seal sent by God (although the earliest accounts
describe this seal as a ring: see Testament of Solomon; later
innovations were made by various ceremonial magicians and authors of
other grimoires where they have described the seal as a ring.)
Talismans in the Abrahamic religions
Since the Middle Ages in Western culture pentagrams have had a
reputation as amulets to attract money, love, etc; and to protect
against envy, misfortune, and other disgraces. Other symbols, such
as magic squares, angelic signatures and kabalistic signs have been
employed to a variety of ends, both benign and malicious.
The Jewish tradition is quite fascinating; examples of Solomon
era amulets exist in many museums. Due to proscription of idols,
Jewish amulets emphasize text and namesâthe shape, material or color
of an amulet makes no difference.
The Jewish tallis (Yiddish-Hebrew form; plural is talleisim), the
prayer shawl with fringed corners and knotted tassels at each
corner, is perhaps one of the world's oldest and most used
talismanic objects. Originally intended to distinguish the Jews from
pagans, as well as to remind them of God and Heaven, the prayer
shawl is considered fascinating because of its name: it is very
close to the term "talisman."
A crucifix, considered in Christian tradition
as a defense against demons.
In antiquity and the Middle Ages, most Jews, Christians and
Muslims in the Orient believed in the protective and healing power
of amulets and talismans. Talismans used by these peoples can be
broken down into three main categories. The first are the types
carried or worn on the body. The second version of a talisman is one
which is hung upon or above the bed of an infirm person. The last
classification of talisman is one with medicinal qualities. This
latter category of magical item can be further divided into external
and internal. In the former, one could, for example, place a magical
amulet in a bath. The power of the amulet would be understood to be
transmitted to the water, and thus to the bather. In the latter,
magical inscriptions would be written or inscribed onto food, which
was then boiled. The resulting broth, when consumed, would transfer
the healing and magical qualities engraved on the food into the
There is also evidence that Jews, Christians, and Muslims used
their holy books in a talisman-like manner in grave situations. For
example, a bed-ridden and seriously ill person would have a holy
book placed under part of the bed or cushion.
Christian authorities have always been wary of amulets and other
talismans. However, the legitimate use of sacramentals, as long as
one has the proper disposition, is practically encouraged in
traditional Christianity. For example, the crucifix is considered a
powerful apotropiac against demons and fallen spirits, and rosaries
or St. Christopher medals are frequently hung on rear-view mirrors
A little-known but well-worn amulet in the Jewish tradition is
the kimiyah or "angel text". This consists of names of angels or
Torah passages written on parchment squares by rabbinical scribes.
The parchment is then placed in an ornate silver case and worn
someplace on the body. Muslims also wear such amulets, called
Ta'wiz, with chosen text from Quran. The text is generally chosen
depending on the situation for which the amulet is intended.
Generally however, usage of amulets and other talismans is
considered superstitious among more radical Muslims.
The similarities between Jewish and Buddhist amulet traditions is
The Christian Copts sometimes use tattoos as protective amulets,
and the Tuareg still use them, as do the Haida Canadian aborigines,
who wear the totem of their clan tattooed. Many Thai Buddhist
laypeople are tattoed with sacred Buddhist images, called sak yant
(Thai: à¸ªà¸±à¸à¸¢à¸±à¸à¸à¹), and even monks are known to practice this form of
spiritual protection. The only rule, as with Jewish talismans and
amulets, is that such symbols may only be applied to the upper part
of the body, between the bottom of the neck and the waistline.
The male bird headed being looks much like the Egyptian God Horus
- resurrection and rebirth. The female with wings speaks the alchemy
of consciousness. The amulets above were found in an ancient burial
tomb in close proximity to an ancient pyramid located in the
Mississippi River Valley. According to legend, this was the burial
tomb of a High Priest and Priestess who inhabited that ancient city
well over 30,000 years ago. They were laid to rest together so they
might share the same union in the after world that they shared on
the Earth plane. The strength of their union and concurrent time of
death was indicated by the symbolic placement of their hands, one
holding the other's.
Talismans and Lucky Charms
Our journey on planet Earth is all about personal power and
freedom... to struggle past anything that controls your 'free
Some people are able to manifest that power on their own,
while others, through the history of humanity, have placed that
power into inanimate objects - the choice of those objects based on
the folklore of their timelines. Much of this folklore is about the
supernatural . . . Magik . . . Magic . . . that which is more than
what we can do with our physical bodies. . . higher forces linked to
creation/god/source of power.
Five Metals Ring
Some objects carry energy, such as crystals and certain precious
metals. By placing one's energies into the object it could work as
an amplifier for one's personal power. The object and the person can
work together in a manner of speaking.
Talismans - and some amulets - are charms which allegedly have
magical empowering abilities or power of their own which is
transmitted to their possessors. They are used to attract good luck
and to ward off evil. These include religious items.
In our timeline we work with healing our issues, especially the
lower frequency emotions; fear, anger, self-sabotage, psychological
disorders, to restore us to higher frequency. In so doing we release
the third dimension and its physical objects and move back into our
natural state as spirit where these lower emotions do not exist as
they do not vibrate as lower/ slower moving frequencies.
When one comes into their own power, they tend to realize that
they alone create the luck and can protect themselves from negative
frequencies/forces. Once a person vibrates to a higher frequency,
letting go of lower emotions that hurt themselves and others, there
is no longer a need for physical objects to do their bidding.
Usually the function of talismans is to make possible powerful
transformations which the person would not feel empowered to do
without it. A talisman can initially be used then later set aside.
There is a long tradition throughout history of talismans made by
alchemists, shamans, witches, priests, etc. and sold - or given to
In Magic talismans supposedly can be endowed with its
supernatural power only by the forces of nature, by god or the gods,
or by being made so in a ritualistic way.
Among talismans are precious stones for they each possess their
own magical or curative powers endowed by nature.
Talismans can be any object, design, or symbol believed to be
endowed with magical powers. The item is active in that it, and of
itself, bestows this magical power upon the one who possesses it at
The Egyptians and Babylonians used talismans when attempting to
alter the forces of nature. In the Middle Ages, holy relics and
other objects assumed the value of talismans in attempts to cure
illnesses. Some thieves converted severed hands of thieves into
talismans to assist them in their trade.
Alchemical charms were worn by kings and queens, popes and
bishops, merchants and diplomats. Less expensive amulets, usually
made by witches, were worn or hung in the house by nearly everybody
else. The most common amulets were those that protected against
violence, plague, theft and bad luck.
In ancient African culture, the carrying of an animal's foot, or
other parts of a swift creature were supposed to help a person be
able to escape or flee with the speed of the animal. This 'lucky
rabbits foot' charm was handed down and assimilated into our culture
by the enslaved Africans who were brought to the New World. Also
borrowed from centuries of African Voodoo ceremonies is a Mojo or
luck bag could carry many lucky objects or a spell meant to cause a
particular effect. The idea is that certain items (spices, teeth,
feathers etc,) placed in a bag and blessed or Â³chargedÂ² will produce
a magical effect for the person who carries it. Mojo bags are still
popular today as many advertisements in magazines and on web sites
promote their use and distribution.
Many alchemists sought the assistance of talismans which they
made in elaborate ceremonies which were conducted during periods of
auspicious astrological signs. During these rituals they recited
incantation to conjure the desired spirits who imbued the talismans
with magical power.
The talisman most sought after was the elusive Philosopher's
Stone, which the alchemists thought would transform base metals into
silver and gold.
In modern times, many lucky charms and talismans have been
adopted and utilized.
Anything that you consider brings you luck . . or protects you .
. . is a talisman.
Ancient ceremonial practices are still performed in most parts of
the planet and involved talismans.
During the early 20th century when many Irish Catholic men became
Police officers in New York City, many started carrying a medal of
St.Jude, along with their callbox key for protection, as St. Jude is
considered to be the patron saint of policemen.
Many Catholics continue to believe that certain holy medals
(especially blessed ones) will aid those who wear them, particularly
St. Christopher, who is the patron saint of travelers.
Although crosses are not employed as a deflector for vampires
today, at most Catholic funerals many attendees have crucifixes
around their necks that donÂ¹t usually wear one as everyday jewelry.
On a less religious, although team spiritual level, some
ballplayers swear by a pair of 'lucky socks' and hesitate to wash
them during an important series for fear that they will lose power.
Although science has defeated superstition on many levels, we
can't help but pick up the penny lying in the street or smile when
we come across a four-leaf clover.
Astrological Talismans & Amulets
Magicians affirm that Images, Seals & Rings Being Opportunely
Framed under a Certain Constellation... some Wonderful Thing may be
Talisman comes from the Greek telesma meaning consecrated or
sacred object. Amulet comes from the Latin amuletum and refers more
narrowly to objects with an apotropaic or protective function. The
key to astrological talismans and amulets is the timing of their
creation which is determined by electional astrology. Unless
talismans are created at an astrologically auspicious time as well
as being ritually consecrated they are nothing more than jewelry
with astrological designs, lacking any magical or spiritual charge.
Personalized Trinity talisman
Talismans represent the logical extension of a spiritual world
view and have been a part of Western culture for thousands of years.
Renaissance Magi like Marsilio Ficino and Cornelius Agrippa saw the
entire Cosmos as one great, interconnected Being, a system based on
intricate harmony, sympathy and correspondence, both spiritual and
material. Astrology, Alchemy and Magic were seen as the preparatory
studies for Hermetic Gnosis, a practical way of experiencing the
unity of the Cosmos.
Astrologer from the Shepherd's Kalender
The Renaissance Astrology website provides resources for both
students and practitioners of authentic medieval and Renaissance
astrological magic. All of the information on the website has been
carefully researched from authentic traditional sources and
meticulously cited for further reading and study. Those who find
their interest piqued and wish to go beyond simply studying this
fascinating area, can obtain talismans created exactly according to
the traditional sources or learn how to create talismans for
themselves in accordance with the ancient Western esoteric system.
"[It] renders him that wears it to be renowned, amiable,
acceptable, potent in all his works, and equals a man to Kings, and
Princes, elevating him to high fortunes, enabling to do whatsoever
All in all the talismans are a wonderful example of the magical
power of numbers and symbols, practical exemplars of the harmony and
interconnections of all things in the Cosmos.
The MAGUS or CELESTIAL INTELLIGENCER
by Francis Barrett, F.R.C., 1801
In these twenty eight Mansions do lie hid many secrets of the
wisdom of the antients, by the which they wrought wonders on all
things which are under the circle of the Moon....
The Magus by Frances Barrett was published in London in 1801. It
consists primarily of material found in the Three Books of Occult
Philosophy of Cornelius Agrippa and the Fourth Book of Occult
Philosophy also attributed to Agrippa. The following excerpt
conforms to Book II, Chapter 33 of Three Books of Occult Philosophy
with only minor changes in spelling, capitalization and syntax.
The MAGUS or CELESTIAL INTELLIGENCER
by Francis Barrett, F.R.C., 1801
Book Two, Chapter 33
Book Two, Chapter 33 Page 153
Of the twenty eight Mansions of the Moon, and their virtues.
And seeing the Moon measures the whole Zodiac in the space of
twenty eight days, hence is it that the wise men of the Indians and
most of the antient astrologers have granted twenty eight Mansions
to the Moon, which being fixed in the eight sphere, do enjoy (as
Alpharus says) divers names and proprieties from the various signs
and stars which are contained in them, through which while the Moon
wanders, it obtains other and other powers and virtues; but every
one of these mansions, according to the opinion of Abraham,
contained twelve degrees, and fifty one minutes, and almost twenty
six seconds, whose names and also their beginnings in the Zodiac of
the eight sphere, are these.
And in these twenty eight Mansions do lie hid many secrets of the
wisdom of the antients, by the which they wrought wonders on all
things which are under the circle of the Moon; and they attributed
to every Mansion his resemblances, images, and seals, and his
president intelligences, and worked by the virtue of them after
Types of Astrological Talismans & Amulets
The key to the construction of an astrological talisman lies in
the choice of the astrological factor or factors whose energy or
spirit the mage wishes to capture. In traditional Western
astrological magic this choice appears to have been task oriented.
The client or the mage himself wishes to accomplish a particular
result, love, money, success, any of a myriad of possibilities. The
mage then selects the most appropriate astrological factor typically
choosing either a planet, fixed star, Mansion of the Moon or house
The mage must consider the current state of the Heavens for not
all talismans can be made at any particular time. The mage may also,
depending on the circumstances, consider the birth chart of the
client or subject of the talisman, a horary chart or even the chart
of a city or country, in choosing the talisman and the time for its
creation. The astrological magician, therefore, must have a good
working knowledge of the theory and practice of traditional
Electional Astrology. Using the principles of electional astrology,
the mage chooses a time when the particular astrological factor is
strong and appropriately placed.
Once an appropriate time is chosen, the mage gathers the
materials from which the talisman will be made. Each planet, for
example, is associated with a certain metal. As the chosen time the
mage creates the talisman. My talismans are all cast from precious
metals, but talismans can also be stamped, inscribed or engraven and
made in metal, gems, or even on paper or parchment. The effect of
gemstone and metal talismans is longer lasting, for as the
Renaissance philosopher Marsilio Ficino observes, "gems and metals,
though they seem too hard for accepting a celestial influence,
nevertheless retain it longer if they receive it." Three Books on
Life, Book III, chapter 14. Once again the key is that the talisman
must receive its form at the elected time if it is to be
Personalized Cosmic Sigil Talisman
After making the talisman with the appropriate signs, sigils,
characters, images and designs, as set forth at length in our
traditional sources, the mage then consecrates the talisman in a
magical ceremony. In one sense this can be seen as charging the
talisman with the energy of the chosen astrological factor. At the
same time, the consecration can also be seen as the invocation of
the spirit ruling or animating the chosen astrological factor who
then inhabits or infuses the talisman with its particular powers.
The talisman is then worn by the user or placed in a location where
the mage wishes the effects of the talisman to manifest.
Talismans and sacred geometry
Very often the talismans symbols are taken out of sacred
geometry. The term "sacred geometry" is used by archaeologists,
anthropologists, and geometricians to encompass the religious,
philosophical and spiritual beliefs that have sprung up around. It
is a term covering Pythagorean geometry and neo-Platonic geometry.
Sacred geometry is often referred to as a language of G-d. Sacred
geometry symbols are a means of bringing subtle, inner realities to
a focus in outward expression. Within the fundamental unity of
consciousness, certain symbols, such as the lotus lifting itself in
purity above the muddy water, possess universal relevance and power.
Jewish and Kabbalah Talismans
Star of David
The name David in ancient Hebrew (during the time of King David) is
made up of three letters "Dalet", "Vav" and "Dalet". The letter
Dalet in ancient Hebrew is actually a triangle. King David used the
six pointed star as his signature (the two triangles of his name).
The middle letter "Vav" means six - The six pointed star.
The six-points symbolize that God rules over the universe and
protects us from all six directions: North, South, East, West, Up
and Down. King David used this symbol in the battlefield on his
shield as an omen from God.
The Hamsa is known as the hand of Miriam or Hamesh hand. The Hamsa
serves as an ancient talismanic way of averting the evil eye and
providing a "protecting hand" or "Hand of God". The Hamsa often
appears in stylized form, as a hand with three fingers raised, and
sometimes with two thumbs arranged symmetrically.
Five metals ring
According to the ancient kabalistic text, the secret of the five
metals ring success is that at the specific time of the creation of
the ring with these five metals, Jupiter's influence is summoned
forth. Jupiter is the star of development and expansion, and success
is at it's strongest at the specific time of the ring's creation.
The layer on the top of the five metals ring is pure gold. Below it
there is a layer of lead and tin, and the last layer is copper,
while the ring itself is made out of silver.
Tree of life
The Tree of Life is one of the most familiar of the Sacred Geometry
Symbols. The structure of the Tree of Life is connected to the
sacred teachings of the Jewish Kabbalah. The Tree of Life is
explained in Sefer Yetzira ("Book of Creation"). The book explains
the creation as a process involving the 10 divine numbers (sefirot)
of God the Creator and the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet. The 10
sefirot together with the 22 letters constitute the "32 paths of
Ancient Egyptian Talismans
The young scarab beetles emerged spontaneously from the burrow they
were born in. Therefore they were worshipped as "Khepera", which
means "the one who came forth". The scarab-beetle god Khepera was
believed to push the setting sun along the sky in the same manner as
the beetle with his ball of dung. In many artifacts, the scarab is
depicted pushing the sun along its course in the sky.
The Ankh is a symbolic representation of both Physical and Eternal
life. It is known as the original cross, which is a powerful symbol
that was first created in Ancient Egypt.
Ankh is typically associated with material things such as water,
air, sun, as well as with the Gods, who are frequently pictured
carrying an Ankh.
In Egyptian history, the heart replaced the heart which was removed
during mummification. Sometimes assimilated to the Bennu, "Soul of
RÃ¢", it brings the protection of both Osiris and RÃ¢.
Other Egyptian talismans
Buckle or Knot of Isis, Djed, Ba, Two Fingers and Udjat or Eye of
The cross of Christianity was a symbol of the faith. It was
previously considered a pagan symbol, with several early church
fathers objecting to its use. The cross represents Christ's victory
over death and sin, since it is believed that through His death he
conquered death itself.
The fish's first known use as a Christian religious symbol was
sometime within the first three centuries AD.Â Christians began
using the Greek word for "fish" as an acronym for "Jesus Christ
God's Son, Savior". Followers of Christianity were called Pisciculi;
the root of this Latin word is "fish".
Buddha images provide a reassuring reminder of the basic tenets of
Buddhist religion. Just as Buddhist religion is practiced in many
different ways, the Buddhist image also serves a wide variety of
ritual purposes and has different meanings for different people.
Buddha can be invested with a huge amount of information, meaning
and implication; they evolve and they are given life. The Buddha
image cast in the human form gives it a value presented as calm,
still and serene.
The Tibetans create their beautiful Mandalas from colored sand and
if you'll take a metal plate and cover it with sand and make it
vibrate with different sounds, you will be able to see different
structures that are formed in the sand, that are very similar to the
sand Mandalas. In the end, after a few weeks when the Mandalas is
finished, they simply wipe the sand off Mandalas to show the
non-attachment to the illusion of the external, and also to show the
constant change and the process of life and death that takes place
in the external world of illusion.
Om is the most sacred syllable in Hinduism, first coming to
light in the Vedic Tradition. The syllable is sometimes referred to
as the "Udgitha" or "pranava mantra". The symbol of Om contains
three curves, one semicircle and a dot. The large lower curve
symbolizes the waking state; the upper curve denotes deep sleep (or
the unconscious) state, and the lower curve (which lies between deep
sleep and the waking state) signifies the dream state.
The Tibetan knot (Srivatsa or the endless knot) is one of the eight
symbols of the Tibetan Buddhism. The Tibetan knot can stand for
karmic consequences: pull here, something happens over there. It is
an apt symbol for the Vajrayana methods: Often when we tug at one
part of a knot while trying to loosen it, another part becomes
tighter. You have to work with the knot to enable it to come undone.
In its endless configuration, it evokes the cyclic nature of rebirth
and also calls karmic connections to mind.
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