From Association of Independent Readers and Rootworkers
Magical Talismans, also known as Amulets, Charms, or Lucky Pieces are small objects that are created or specially crafted to carry, draw, or amplify a specific quality of the person, such as strength or luck; to bring about a certain desired condition, such as sexual attractiveness or gambling wins; or to remove an unwanted condition, such as the negativity caused by jealous rivals or envious onlookers.
Talismans are an ancient magical form, common in many cultures. They are frequently inscribed with signs, seals, sigils, or words, which may be written in magical alphabets or in plain writing. The inscribed words or images may be in the form of a prayer to the Almighty, or they may invoke a specific spirit. They may also be in the form of a seal, as those from the 6th and 7th Book of Moses or the Seal of Solomon.
Talismancs, charms, and lucky pieces can be crafted or created to protect the bearer or bring luck to their owner, or both. They are often made in the shape of a small object such as a coin or a small packet, and they may be carried in the pocket, worn as visible jewelry, carried as keychains, or hidden on the person. Common ways of carrying a hidden talisman include having the lucky or protective charm sewn into clothing, carried in the bosom, secreted in a zippered compartment of a purse or wallet, or kept out of sight in the watch pocket of a pair of pants.
Solomonic and Mosaic Amulets
Many traditional hoodoo spiritual workers offer talismans whose imagery and intent are drawn from old-time Jewish sources like the Key of Solomon and the 6th and 7th Books of Moses. Books describing such talismanic seals have been known among African American root doctors since the late 19th century, and the amulets themselves, along with copies of the seals printed on parchment paper, have been offered through mail order houses catering to root workers since the 1910s or earlier.
Solominic and Mosaic seals printed on parchment paper may be carried in small cloth or leather wallets or folded and inserted into mojo hands and conjure bags. Each seal has a specific usage, according to Jewish magical traditions. For instance, a seal of Jupiter may be used for wealth, while a seal of the Sun may be used for the improvement of a client's health. Petitions, prayers, or portions of Biblical text may be written on the back of the seals, as may the name of a client or of a client's associate on whom the root doctor has been hired to work.
The same Solomonic and Mosaic talismans are quite commonly manufactured with cast or engraved metal. They are most often made of pewter, but are also sometimes found in brass, sterling silver, copper, or even gold. Likewise, the beneficial Surahs of the Koran may be inscribed in part on metal charms and carried as talismanic pieces. Traditionally, such talismans are prepared especially for the client by being dressed and blessed in the name of the one to whom they will belong. Renaissance astrologers utilize precise astrological timing to create talismans.
Sometimes when folks think of magical talismans, they visualize fancy, ornate, and perhaps expensive jewelry or occult amulets. Fortunately, some of the most effective magical talismans are natural botanical and zoological curios that can be carried on the person or kept on a shrine or altar in the home.
Among the most popular natural curios employed as a magical talismans in hoodoo are whole roots like John the Conqueror root, carried for male power and gambling luck; Queen Elizabeth root for female power and love luck; Nutmeg of India and Lucky Hand root, for gambling luck; Angelica root, for protection; and Master root, for domination and power over others.
Also highly prized are zoological curios like the lucky rabbit foot, for good luck; the black cat bone, to force a lover to return or for invisibility; and the alligator foot, for money-drawing.
Mineral talismans include lodestones, a single one for money-drawing and a matched pair for love-drawing; and pyrite, for money-luck.
Talismanic Beads and Prayer Beads
The word "bead" comes from the old English "bede," which meant "to pray." Beads can be used singly, as small charms, amulets, or talismans, but it also common to string them in patterns which may be used as memory-devices that aid in the recitation of prayers. Ritually prepared beads include rosaries, malas, worry beads, fertility beads (usually worn about a woman's waist), and anti-evil-eye beads (usually blue with an eye design on them).
Enchanted or prayed-over beads may be dual purpose jewelry, functioning both as appealing ornaments and as embodiments of prayer and acts of devotion.
United States coins have a long and varied history of use as talismanic pieces in hoodoo. Everyday coins from your pocket can be used to dominate a lover, to attract lucky cash in business money spells and gambling magic, and as personal wards and guardians in apotropaic or protective charms. Birth-year coins can be crafted and prepared as symbols of your self and your partner in love spells and mojo hands for marriage. Coins that you receive from the hands of someone you love are also valuable tokens in hoodoo -- they can be fixed and prepared by a conjure doctor or rootworker to ensure that your lover is always free in giving money to you. In addition, certain denominations of coinage are highly regarded as talismans for protection and luck.
The god Mercury's associations with financial prosperity and speed are retained in conjure doctors' use of the Mercury dime in money drawing spells. Leap year Mercury dimes are considered especially lucky because of their relative rarity.
Silver dimes are also used for protection from foot-track magic. They are most often tucked into the insole of a shoe or strung on a cord that is worn around the ankle, but you may also find them carried in a protective mojo bag and or crafted into jewelry. If your silver dime turns black, you may have been exposed to Goofer Dust, Hot Foot powder, or some other cursing or crossing spell, but you are protected, as the dime has taken the hit for you. Likewise, if the cord breaks on your Mercury dime anklet, the talisman took the hit and you are not affected by whatever roots, powders, or messes were thrown for you.
Many old-time conjure recipes and prescriptions mention liquid metallic mercury or quicksilver as an ingredient. Because mercury is a highly poisonous neurotoxin, these days we find that most responsible and ethical hoodoo workers will substitute other herbs and curios for this dangerous elemental metal. Silver Mercury dimes are the most popular substitute for liquid mercury in money-drawing and gambling spells and money-drawing mojo hands.
Indian Head Centshoodoo rootworkers and spiritual practitioners and with the spirit of Black Hawk, who is generally represented in the conjure community by any found or created figure of a Native American man. Like Black Hawk, the Indian on the coin is employed as a scout and lookout.
Many hoodoo rootworker specialize in Black Hawk work and they can fix and prepare these coins as protective talismans, particularly for those who wish to avoid legal entanglements by means of Law Keep Away spells. Additionally, If you want personal instructions and guidance in how to prepare and use such coins to protect and nail down your own place of business or your home, you may schedule a spiritual telephone consultation or magical coaching session with a hoodoo root work who can instruct you.
Protective Charms Against the Evil Eye
The evil eye is the name for a type of crossed condition found most often in Jewish, Middle-Eastern, African, Mediterranean, European, and Latin American communities. It is mentioned in the Bible, and its history goes back even farther, to ancient Sumer and Egypt. When someone is given the evil eye it means that they have been looked upon with envy or jealousy and cursed, crossed, or jinxed by another person. While the curse can take on many different forms, it usually involves a drying up of some sort: your child may fall sick with vomiting and diarrhea and thus become seriously dehydrated, your fruit trees may drop their fruit before harvest time, you can experience a financial drying up where your funds suddenly seem to evaporate, or there may be a drying up of your love life that can range from lack of conjugal interest to outright erectile dysfunction and impotence. Sometimes folks who get the evil eye are intentionally crossed, but most often the eye is cast by accident, through a momentary feeling of jealousy. Many cases involve children, as when a woman who cannot have children sees a happy mother and, in a moment of jealousy and frustration, casts the evil eye upon the baby.
In order to prevent being hit by the evil eye, people have developed an entire family of protective charms, talismans, art pieces, and spoken blessings. Because the body of evil eye lore comes down to us primarily from parts of the world where water is literally the elixir of life and is very rare, we find that while the evil eye dries you up, the cure, which may involve spitting, makes you moist -- and a watery shade of blue is the most popular colour for charms and talismans against the evil eye. The shape and form of the eye itself are also utilized in many of these charms and talismans, as are other symbols of protection and benefit, like the hamsa hand, the eye-in-hand, and the Italian horn. Even an African American mojo bag for protection may be ornamented with a blues bead to turn back the evil eye of jealous co-workers and false friends.
There are many, many varieties of charms and talismans for both warding off and protecting from the evil eye and there are just as many hand movements and verbal blessings that can be delivered as soon as a client feels the eye has been thrown at them. If you suspect that you may have been crossed by the evil eye, you may wish to consult a reputable psychic reader who can assist you in assessing your situation, prescribe spiritual remedies to take off the condition, and provide you with talismanic charms to prevent the same thing happening again. If you want personal instructions and guidance in how to take off the evil eye or protect yourself against it, you may schedule a spiritual telephone consultation or magical coaching session with a hoodoo root worker who can instruct you.
Ritually Fixed and Prepared Jewelryritually smoked or dressed with oils or otherwise prepared and enchanted in a number of different ways and for many different reasons. Often we find that folks will use such jewelry for protection, to ward off evil, to heal certain parts of the body, as a sacred marker of marriage or the birth of a child, or to ameliorate negative conditions, such as a poorly positioned planet in the natal horoscope chart. Empowering and enchanting jewelry is a broad category of spiritual spell-crafting that covers much ground, and those interested in acquiring such jewelry have a wide range of choices.
The most in-depth process of preparation can involve designing and ordering custom pieces of jewelry that incorporate symbols, gemstones, precious metals, sigils, and inscribed petitions appropriate for the conditions they are intended to address. However it is also often the case that heirloom pieces of jewelry, such as wedding rings, bracelets, brooches, or pendants passed down through a family for generations, have their own ritual use and significance that can be just as powerful as a piece that was designed from scratch. Even the jewelry that one wears every day can be dressed, fixed, and prayed over with oils, powders, or other ritually prepared products, setting the jewelry to work for a specific condition, such as love drawing, money drawing, court case, blessing, protection, and peaceful home situations.
Workers who ritually prepare and fix jewelry may have experience in the arts of metallurgy and lapidary; they may string, weave, or bead as a hobby or professionally, or they may provide the service of blessing, inscribing, and fixing pre-made pieces of jewelry so that they will work for whatever the client desires. Clients interested in acquiring ritually fixed and prepared jewelry or in having pieces that they wear every day ritually blessed and enchanted should expect their rootworker to be familiar with the traditional correspondences between gems, precious metals, and symbols and the condition or situation for which the jewelry will be prepared.
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