- Amulets - an integral part of the life of various ethnic groups
- Fatima's hand
- Miriam's hand
- Chinese symbol of the balance of power between good and evil
- Birds in the Chinese tradition
- Birds, the personifying forces of good and evil in ancient Egypt
- Cat in the cult of the Egyptians
- Pre-Christian symbols of good and evil in Russia. Kolohort
- Birds in the Russian tradition
- Symbols of good and evil in the Christian tradition
- Modern use of amulets
Throughout the history of human civilization, people have sought to know good and evil. Even in ancient times, the wise men noticed an inseparable connection between these opposing phenomena of the physical and intangible worlds. One is impossible without the other, like darkness without light, life without death, illness without health, wealth without poverty, mind without stupidity, etc.
Amulets - an integral part of the life of various ethnic groups
Researchers, archaeologists and historians who studied the monuments of antiquity, found that in ancient manuscripts and on household items found in various parts of the world, along with the image of everyday events there are repeated signs that seem to fix the drawn plots or showing the causes of the imprinted phenomena. In some cases they are bizarre badges, in others they are living creatures with body parts from different animals, in the third - animals themselves.
One part of the characters looks static, the other, on the contrary, as if contains movement. And although most of them gave the impression of detachment and neutrality, the researchers were far from always and not immediately able to unambiguously characterize their essence and meaning: what is there in them - good or evil, cause or effect? This concerned Yin-Yang, Oroboros, Khamsa, Kolokhorta, Ankh, Molvintsa, some symbolic animals, gods, etc.
It turns out that these signs are designed to balance antagonistic forces, create equality between them.
It is known that too much good generates evil and, on the contrary, an excess of evil opens up opportunities for the manifestation of kindness. The preponderance of both one and the other forces is fraught with great troubles. Since everything in the world is interconnected, and man is small and defenseless, non-verbal magic of charms comes to the rescue.
Symbols of peace and goodness, leveling the mutual influence of opposing elements, neutralizing evil and attracting good, have long been decided to draw on the walls of houses and on objects of utilitarian purpose. Amulets-charms, embodying the desired intention, wore on the body, hoping in this way to protect themselves from misfortune or to achieve the realization of the cherished goal.
This symbol of goodness and mercy is considered a talisman of Jews and Muslims, but it appeared long before the emergence of monotheistic religions. According to some sources, a symmetrical palm, a hamsa, is an affiliation of the pagan cults of ancient Mesopotamia, according to others - Egypt.
According to ancient Egyptian beliefs, the Hamsa fingers are the divine consorts of Osiris and Isis. The central finger is their son Horus, and the two extreme ones represent the ancestral spirits.
According to all traditions, the open palm - hamsa, symbolizes childbearing, health and protection from the evil eye. She, as a universal amulet, is hung in cars, in apartments, attached to bracelets and chains.
Jewelry - pendants and earrings in the form of a symmetrical palm, made of gold and silver, adorned with precious stones, enamel and engraved.
In Islam, the hand of Fatima, or hamsa, personifies the five pillars of this religion - fasting during Ramadan, generosity to the poor, jihad, pilgrimage to Mecca and ritual ablution.
The palm of Fatima is the national emblem of Algeria and is depicted on the national flag of the republic.
The story of the Muslim ward is:
Fatima was the daughter of the Prophet Mahomet. According to legend, she could heal the sick with the touch of her hand. Once, when she was cooking dinner, her husband entered the house with his mistress, Fatima dropped her spoon by surprise and continued to stir the hot dish with her bare hand. Grief, jealousy and despair deprived her of sensitivity. Since then, Muslim women have resorted to using the palm of Fatima, when they need moral support and protection from various manifestations of evil.
According to the Jewish tradition, the Hamsa personifies the Pentateuch of Moses (Torah, Tanach) - Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy, as well as five Hebrew letters and five senses, which means - a person must have eyesight, hearing, touch, smell and taste to constantly strive to the knowledge of God.
Miriam's hand, or Yad A-Hamesh, is the hand of the sister of the divine Messengers, Aaron and Moses. On one side of the Jewish hamsa, the All-Seeing Eye of the Creator is depicted, and on the other, the Star of David or the words of Amida.
Chinese symbol of the balance of power between good and evil
The Chinese symbol of good and evil, yin-yang, is a black and white circle, divided by a wavy line into two identical parts. Black and white as it flows into one another, and, at the same time, originates in each other. Inside each part there is a small circle of the opposite color.
According to the inhabitants of China, in this figure the essence of the universe, the nature of Tao, is encrypted - the constant mutual penetration of opposites and rebirth. The world is harmonious and a person should understand this.
Contemplation of the yin-yang symbol gives a sense of justice of the world order, the belief that a sad event is always followed by joyful, like night replaces day - this is inevitable. It is only important to treat changing reality and not to rely on the possibility of eternal happiness and joy.
Yin-yang is not only a universal symbol of the harmony of the world. Sometimes enamored boys and girls use it to express love and devotion. They buy a yin-yan amulet, divide it into halves and give each other. Yin is black and symbolizes a woman, and yang is white and symbolizes a man. The girl takes a white half, and the young man takes a black one. In this way, they impose an obligation to be faithful to each other.
Birds in the Chinese tradition
If yin-yang is designed to harmonize all the surrounding space and balance the opposing elements, then the Chinese use special symbols of narrowly directed action to achieve the desired goal in any particular area. The centuries-old observations of the habits of animals and birds gave the inhabitants of the Celestial Kingdom knowledge about their characteristics and what benefits can be derived from the symbols depicting these animals. According to the inhabitants of China, the bird is a symbol of goodness, love, material wealth and a successful career.
Almost in every Chinese house, in its south-western part, you can see the ceramic sculptures of a pair of lovers mandarin ducks in love. Chinese philosophy ascribes to them such properties as loyalty, love and tenderness, because they create couples for life.
On the table, located in the middle of the southern wall, placed figures of roosters. These brave birds always protect their harems from offenders and vigilantly ensure that all the chickens are full, satisfied, and none of them are lost and have not fought off the pack. It is believed that the rooster - the best assistant in matters of promotion through the ranks.
The southeast corner of the apartment is a zone that attracts material well-being into the house. Here you can find a figure or an image of a fire bird phoenix.
In the Chinese house there is always a corner for other birds that bring good luck - owls (to protect against the bad influence of strangers), sparrows and pigeons (for peace and harmony between spouses), herons (for longevity), eagles (for willpower and decisiveness), grouse (for respectability and self-confidence), swans (for purity of thoughts) and falcons (for courage and victory in competitions).
Birds, the personifying forces of good and evil in ancient Egypt
In ancient Egypt, the mythical birds of the Great Gogotun and Vienna were considered gods, and killing a falcon, kite or ibis was punishable by death.
God of the Moon, wisdom and justice, He had the head of an ibis. This bird foreshadowed the future of the Egyptians. It was believed that it manages the spill of the Nile, and this is directly related to the harvest of the fruits of the earth.
One of the three main Egyptian gods, Horus, who owned the ankh, the key that opens all the roads of destiny, had a falcon head. This bird patronized the pharaohs and protected them.
The goddess Nekhbet had wings and a crest of a kite. She gave the Pharaohs power and patronized the mining of precious metals. Ordinary people also turned to Nehbet for help. Her huge wings covered from any danger and dispersed the forces of evil.
Cat in the cult of the Egyptians
The Egyptians worshiped not only birds, but also beasts. The cat in the Egyptian cult symbolized good, fun and fertility. This animal is a gift of the gods to people. Her incarnation is the beautiful goddess Bastet with the head of a cat. Temples were built in her honor, and the city of Bubastis, dedicated to Bastet, was the first Egyptian city to which the Virgin Mary came with her Divine Son during their flight from King Herod.
If Bastet did not receive due veneration, then turned into an evil Sekhmet with the head of a lioness.
Cats in ancient Egypt served as the protection of the wheat harvest, which the Egyptians supplied to many countries of the world. These animals did not allow rodents to spoil grain stocks and destroy barns. The man who killed the cat was stoned to death. In case of fire or flooding, cats were the first to be taken out of the house to a safe place.
Cats in ancient Egypt were buried along with their masters in a common crypt. They were mummified or burned in special crematoria. If the cat was dying, then its owners observed mourning for several days - men shaved their eyebrows, and women dressed in appropriate dresses. Bastet figurines, as symbols of good and material prosperity, still adorn the houses of modern Egyptians.
In recent decades, ancient sacral symbols (in particular, the Egyptian sign of good, ankh) began to be actively used by young people to express the exclusivity of their subculture. So goths, emo, punks, hippies and others are happy to wear amulets on their wrists and necks, copied from pharaohs found in the tombs or peeped in the Slavic Vedas.
The Egyptian key of life, the ankh, has no less profound content than the Chinese symbol of good and evil, yin-yang.
The ancient Egyptians believed that the short life of a person in the physical shell is not only not finite, but not the most important one. The main life takes place in the Duat, beyond the threshold of death. The door to the afterlife can only be opened by the deity owning the ankh. This key is multivalued. It symbolizes man and woman, the sunrise and the movement of vital energy inside the human body, as well as access to secret knowledge and protection from the forces of evil.
The first Christians of Egypt, the Copts, declared the ankh as a symbol of their faith. Originally the key of life belonged to Osiris. Christ became his successor, and the ankh, along with other signs - two fish, alpha and omega, an anchor, ship, and others, until the beginning of the crusades was firmly associated with Christianity.
Ankh is a symbol of goodness, wisdom and victory over evil. It is also the tree of life, where the ring is the crown and the mountain world, and the pivot is the trunk of the tree and the path of man.
In the Middle Ages, ankh were hung over the bed of the woman in labor, so that the childbirth would pass safely and a new person would come to the world, endowed with good health and a happy fate.
The Chinese symbol of good and evil yin-yang is the late transformation of a similar in meaning and significance of the most ancient Middle Eastern uroboros.
Ouroboros is a serpent curled into a ring and biting its tail or spewing itself. This is one of the old signs, containing in itself a lot of meanings, including the cyclical nature of everything in nature and the constant circular movement of the forces of the universe. The head of the snake personifies the inner world of man, and the tail - the surrounding reality. The essence of the symbol is that man, as well as all nature, create themselves and are in constant close relationship. Everything lasts, nothing ends, all processes are unchanged and similar to each other.
According to some sources, Ouroboros, as a symbol of good and evil and their eternal circulation, as a model of the real world, was coined and painted by a student of the famous Jewish scholar Maria in the days of Egyptian Queen Cleopatra. According to other sources, he was known from 1600 BC. e. and also from Egyptian tombs.
Waroboros is the most accurate and most famous symbol of good and evil, death and rebirth, eternity and infinity, the universe and the stars, heaven and hell, earth and water.
Pre-Christian symbols of good and evil in Russia. Kolohort
The idea of good and evil, of the cyclical nature and impermanence of the material world among the ancient Slavs was not too different from what we know about other nations. Even the main symbol of goodness in Russia, the kolokhort, is a circle, from the center of which eight oppositely directed rays emerge, personifying movements that balance each other - postolon and antisolding. It echoes the Chinese symbol of good and evil, as well as Ouroboros.
Kolokhort symbolizes the sun and the eternal circulation of natural phenomena. God was associated with him and Yarilu, who was born, flourished and died every year at the same time. Yaryla gave Rusich a rich harvest of the fruits of the earth, victory in military affairs, harmony and love in families.
Yarila, embodied in kolokhort, as a Slavic symbol of good and evil, also had power over the spirits of ancestors, over life and death.
Molvinets - Slavic symbol of goodness, the gift of the god Rod, an analogue of Hamsa and Ankh. It looks like a kolokhort, but does not contain movement. This charm in its performance looks static, since it consists of two closed and intertwined closed broken lines, resembling the number 8. Molvinets is a powerful charm from the evil eye, evil thoughts, diseases and unhappiness.
Molvinets bestows the gift of words and beliefs, as well as protects from evil rumors and gossip. It is best suited for lawyers, writers, journalists, politicians and managers of various ranks, although it also helps representatives of other professions.
Birds in the Russian tradition
“Birds are the freest and happiest creatures on earth, ” so said our ancestors, the Slavs. Birds are not tied to one place, they have the opportunity to travel around the world. For them open and transcendental, divine spaces. It is not by chance that the symbol of goodness in fairy tales is the white swan. Often the protagonist, in trouble, found protection and shelter under the wings of this beautiful bird.
A pair of swans remains faithful to each other throughout their lives, and the way they care about their chicks deserves a separate story, because both spouses take turns incubating eggs. Together they get food for the chicks, and together they fight off their enemies.
The rooster is another character who occupies an honorable place in the pantheon of Slavic birds, bringing good and peace. With a loud cry, the rooster accelerates the forces of evil. After the third crowing, the evil force leaves the limits of hearing this sound. The economic and attentive rooster sets up his masters for a responsible attitude to domestic affairs.
Modern science has proven that the sounds of the voices of poultry have a calming effect on the nervous system and relieve accumulated stress.
Symbols of good and evil in the Christian tradition
The original Christian symbolism was directly related to the Middle East. The ancient attributes of good, equality between people, eternal life after physical death and others were actively used by Christians, but they were not invented by them. This statement does not apply only to the cross on which they crucified Jesus. The crucifix was approved as the official symbol of the victory of good over evil only after Queen Helen, mother of the Roman emperor Constantine 1, excavated in Jerusalem in 326 and found miraculous sacred relics connected with the life of the Lord Jesus Christ, and with them Life-giving Cross.
Prior to this, the emblems of Christians were more than two dozen different objects, including plants, animals, etc. The ship was associated with the Noah's Ark and reminded Christians of the need to wait, endure, and believe in salvation. Anchor hinted at the strength and stability of the new teaching.
In the symbolism of the early Christians birds occupied a large place. Thus, the dove meant holy spirit and purity of intentions (it is still used in this sense), the rooster symbolized birth to a new life after performing the baptism ritual in the name of the Holy Spirit, the peacock personified the immortality and imperishability of holy relics, since the meat of this bird does not decay into the earth, and the phoenix is the resurrection of the dead.
Modern use of amulets
Despite the fact that the modern official church considers the use of amulets to be pagan fetishism, it is difficult to understand why only the cross, which is also a kind of talisman, can protect against various manifestations of evil, because contemplation and understanding of ancient symbols, personifying the universe, adjusts to the spiritual and philosophical attitude to the changes taking place in our turbulent world, and creates a positive mood.
It is doubtful that the contemplation of Yin-Yang, Oroboros, Khamsa or Kolokhort would provoke a condemnation of Jesus Christ or Mohammed, as the merchants who sold merchants in the church with certain dubious sacred relics provoked anger in Christ, just like gold rings and chains were sold in the church, dishes and other luxuries and utilitarian purposes for the so-called “recommended fixed donation”.
The purpose of amulets, symbolizing the victory of good over evil, is the establishment of peaceful relations between people. It is very commendable that the ancient symbols of harmony have again become popular and popular with all kinds of people, regardless of their nationality or religion.