Talismans are used and worn on our body to bring protection from evil forces. They are commonly found in scriptures and religions of different cultures. Almost every ancient civilization had such items, often produced in copper, gold, silver or gemstones and there is virtually no country where talismans don’t exist.
In India, many people take the names of Gods on their seals or engrave them on items such as jewelry and simply call them amulets or taweez. The talisman from a snake mold are used to avoid misfortune and cow is widely considered to be a deity representing the Pancha Mahavidya of earth. Wearing anything made from its skin or drinking its milk is seen as penance for one’s sins. Also any red thread tied round the wrist is considered auspicious according to Hindu belief. Also when people have surgery they put an amulet from their mother or sister on the site of the surgery.
In Iran, people use as taweez, a serviceable piece of virgin goat skin as a shield against every wicked and evil phenomenon. They believed to help protect from four bad spirits: mishaps (a byproduct of sin), sicknesses (evil eye), postmortem enemies and demons. In this country talisman – vefk symbolise power and strength while ‘naqsh’ in India carries wishes, love, peace and comfort. Gemstones commonly used in arabic talismans are also often worn as amulets. The most common stones is turquoise, malachite and lapis lazuli. Taweez is a very popular charm wrapped in embroidery made of cotton or wool for protection in Uzbekistan . A lot of Middle Easterners also wear a wristband taweez that contains Quranic verses. This band of bracelets is believed to ward off potential bad incidents such as snakes and scorpions, illnesses, scorpion stings and snake bites.
People in Afghanistan typically wear wafaqs (taweez) that were given by the Prophet Muhammad. Their wafaqs are usually made of metal that is either silver, gold or copper and have a crescent moon and star design. They are attached to the person’s hand by a thin chain in addition to being worn around the chest.
According to the Islamic principle of kalem, it is blasphemous for humans to create or manufacture something that can serve as a conduit between humans and God. In many arab countries decoration with religious symbols is forbidden by law. In Saudi Arabia some women wear the sahwah amulet because they believe it will keep them safe from sexual assault – despite Saudi Arabia being famous for having relatively low rates of assault due to their restrictive social values. In Saudi Arabia the practice of burying a dead grandmother’s spirit in an amulet is common. Moreover Saudi Arabia has some ancient stories written about such practices like King Hishami Taauri who made a ring with his favorite woman’s tooth and buried it with her when she passed away to gain her protection in the afterlife.
Several examples of talismans we see in the US are lucky four-leaf clovers, crossed bones, horseshoes while other common visuals include a crucifix on a bracelet or wristband, vials of holy water, a cross worn around the neck, place markers such as stones or pebbles and various family crests.
There is no specific information available on how many talismans are sold in different countries. There are estimates that indicate that about 50 million are in sale per year across the globe. The global market for charms and amulets is estimated to be worth $14 billion. As for Turkey, Iranians, and Saudi Arabia, along with the Islamic talismans, a lot of Hebrew talismans are used a lot.