The Construction of Talismans
By Luxamore - IndoTalisman.Com
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What are Talismans?
Before dealing with the methodology of Ilmu al-Hikmah in the making of talismans, it would be appropriate to explain what talismans are and how they function, especially in the context of Islamic occultism. In Ilmu al-Hikmah, talismans are generally, sanctified objects, constructed with the inscriptions of occult images, designs, symbols, Divine Names, sacred verses, kameas, etc.--and empowered, charged, consecrated with mystical, spiritual or psychic forces, normally while the consecrator is in an altered state of consciousness, actively embodying and expressing a divine quality or virtue. In Western occultism this channeling of a divine force, as in the construction of a planetary talisman, is facilitated by the assumption of a god-form of one of the pantheons of past cultures. In al-Hikmah, the chanting, contemplation and unification with one or more of the Beautiful 99 Divine Names of Allah serves a similar purpose. Anthropomorphic forms are not applied in occult work as Islam abhors the use of human figures to represent God or any aspect/attribute of divinity. Abstract images such as alphabetic letters and calligraphy are often substituted. This has great bearing in some of the tarekats or spiritual paths of development of the Sufis.
Talismans are normally created to attract or channel a certain form of energy to its bearer producing psycho-somatic changes within the lower principles of the microcosm--the body, mind and emotions. They activate the corresponding forces within the human psyche of which they materially represent with their images, symbols, and characters. Man, the microcosm, reflects the Cosmic in its totality, thus whatever is evoked from the macrocosm causes a corresponding center within the microcosm to resonate, to be aroused and awakened--the reverse is also true. When in operation, a talisman links and forms a triangle of energies between the macrocosm, the microcosm, and itself as mediator.
Talismans are constructed with a single-pointed purpose and intent while the magician's consciousness is under influenced of a magickal force. The potent expression of an undeviating will, attuned with one's divine counterpart, produces magickal effects, and in talismanic construction this is utilized to channel spiritual forces into a material base. The result is the vivification of a "dead object" with an occult life. The sacrament of transforming wafer and wine into the body and blood of Christ (esoterically, the term "Christ" as used here does not to refer to Jesus--the man, but to a divine force) in Catholicism is a magickal act of talismanic construction. When the rite is properly conducted, the consumption of the consecrated objects do release some of their virtues into the psyche. The problem here is whether the celebrant is able to maintain, nourish, and apply them constructively, living a proper spiritual life.
Many of the magickal items on our site make use of the above principle--substances and liquids are consecrated with divine power that would infuse into the human consumer; these items come with the appropriate prayers and mantras. Certain forms of healing employ this principle. Water, for instance, might be charged with a divine force transmitting its healing properties to the patient that ingests it.
The manufacturing and consecration of talismans is a specialty of that branch of magick known as enchantment, and the maker as an enchanter. The enchanter specializes in enchanting objects with virtue. Contemporarily, the art is often simply designated as, "Talismanic Magick." It is a science and art of the magi whereby the will is given a symbolical and functional form so as to facilitate the sought for changes in the consciousness of the bearer of the talisman and/or the environment.
Talismans may be made out of parchment, metals, skin, paper, oils, wood, water--in fact, anything at all; however, every substance has its own level of efficacy in holding the imbued force through charging or consecration. Metals hold forces well, and may last for ages. In contrast, the force bestowed upon water does not last long. Overcharging a talisman with forces that conflict may result in a cursed object.
Some talismans are designed to heighten the vibrations in an environment or to produce certain spiritual, subtle manifestations, as for instance, a barrier of light for protection against negative intrusions. Talismans are to be differentiated from amulets which are most often natural, rather than man-made objects with inherent occult virtues worn for their repelling nature, i.e. carried to ward-off an unwanted energy or condition; however, the emanations of some natural objects do have attractive powers and they are worn as lucky charms; these act as catalysts upon the human psyche raising its positivity; we can cite rabbit's-foot, and flower essences as examples, in their use in aromatherapy.
The Self is creative and the mind facilitates that creativity; what it thinks and believes, empowered with strong feelings, manifests at some level of reality. Indirectly or directly, through suggestion or magnetic induction, amulets and talismans are able to influence in some way the persona of the Spirit--the physical, emotional and mental functions and expressions of man. From what has been implied above we should understand that faith and belief play an important role in the proper functioning of sacred objects, consecrated items, or any tangible occult-gifts of Nature.
From the metaphysical point of view, amulets are less complex structures than talismans. In practical terms, however, talismans and amulets do sometimes share similar functions and purposes. Amulets may be used as a base or matrix for talismanic construction. For instance, tiger-skin is said to possess the virtues of charisma, courage, strength, etc. If we were to use tiger-skin as a base for inscribing mystical diagrams and empowering it with spiritual forces associated with these virtues, the inherent power would increase multifold. Please note that we are not here advocating the killing of animals for their pelt, we are simply stating principles for educational purposes. To sum up the foregoing, any amulet as a natural object, intentionally charged with cosmic power may be considered to be a talisman. Talismans do not always carry material inscriptions or images, but they do hold an imbued power intentionally directed by the enchanter. Appropriate media for talismanic consecration may be found in our Amulets & Talismans page.
When constructed properly, talismans do offer lots of blessings; however, it should be understood that it is not talismanic objects themselves that truly benefit the owner, but the force flowing to and through them. This force is derived from the Universal Spirit, the Source of all manifestations, the power that religionists call "God." Talismans are simply the media for the embodiment of certain aspects of universal energy, comparable to a battery that stores and provides energy of an electrical nature. Talismans are not to be worshipped or idolized, but revered as symbols of God's affection, blessing, and love for humanity. The power charged into a talisman, as alluded to before, awakens the inner-self of the bearer. It primarily affects the subconscious mind by way of suggestion and the induced magnetism upon the aura, the chakras, and the autonomic nervous system making its subtle impact upon the brain. Bearers of talismans ought not to depend solely on them for changes in their lives, but to strive to exert personal effort and to maintain faith in the Source of their being.
Talismanic designs found in Ilmu al-Hikmah are derived from the Islamic tradition. They have also been influenced by the gnostic elements of Christianity, Hermeticism, Judaism; and the secret traditions and teachings of the major and minor prophets/adepts of the Middle East, the region of the Fertile Crescent, and the Holy Land.
Revelation occurs on a major and minor cycle--for a selected circle of spiritual seekers and for humanity en masse. Thus, since the advent of Muhammad, the Prophet (blessed is his name), there have also been mystics and adepts of the occult tradition of Islam that were inspired with mystical and secret knowledge derived from angelic and divine sources related to, and charged with uplifting the human condition in ways instructed by the Spiritual Elders of humanity. Adepts of the past regularly received mystical images, sigils, seals, and symbols from angelic sources that enhanced the existing range of talismanic designs; and these were transmitted to their followers educated with the required spiritual precepts so that the latter do not develop a misunderstanding of talismanic purposes and functions. Talismans like any other object created by the hand of man, must be considered as tools to be used wisely, and not misused or abused. Bearers of talismans are to be responsible for the way they appropriate them.
We place emphasis upon one important factor: what bearers of talismans ought to realize and understand is that these objects are not to be solely depended upon for beneficial changes in their lives. Based upon the cosmic principle that "God helps those who help themselves," talismans ought simply to act as physical reminders that God is forever at one's side--nay, even closer--nearer to one than the jugular vein, disregarding any powers that they may actually possess. One's attitude and thinking should be God-focused.
Over-dependence upon anything external to ourselves may cause one's evolution or spiritual progress to stagnate. However with the proper attitude and understanding, talismans may act as useful propellers leading one to spiritual progress--for unblocking the obstacles upon the Path--they are especial aids to those who are still novices upon the Way. Spiritual maturity requires little use of talismans or any other religious prop to be appropriated, for along the path of spiritual growth, one would personally be transformed into a living talisman, as an embodiment of divinity. This is the proximation of the state called "Insan Kamil," or the perfect human being, a spiritual adept, the Christed-man.
Although orthodox Islam with its fundamental perspective does not condone the practice of the use of talismans, practitioners of magick, however, are quick to point out that there are sources in the Hadiths relating that the Prophet had allowed its use or the application of other practices of the occult--as opposed to sorcery--under the proper circumstances and the right understanding. This is one reason why the votaries and practice of talisman-making and its use has not completely vanished from the world of Islam and has endured for centuries. The apologists argue that talismans are medicines for the battered soul, just as herbs are remedies for the sickly physical body. They do acknowledge, however, that sole reliance upon either of them without having faith in the Supreme is an attitude of "syirik," a belief in polytheistic powers in opposition to the Deity, or a disbelief in the One Unity.
The marvels of the 1001 nights still prevail to this very day. Nevertheless, proponents of opposing points of view--the pro and contra of talismanic and magickal practice, do adamantly uphold their opinions as the correct interpretations of the sayings of the Prophet or of Quranic verses. We will not get involved with this debate; we will leave it to the heart of the individual to decide and not impose personal opinions. We should think and feel for ourselves--be directly guided by the divine voice of the Spirit. God gave us the freedom to choose and think for ourselves, let no man constrain us with dogmas.
From one perspective, the rationale of talismans are scientifically based and is not considered magickal, unless one entertains the notion that scientific technology is a branch of magick. Science naturally evolves into "magick" as its philosophy and technology transcends the frequencies of the physical spectrum of energies and becomes metaphysical. Although talismans function and operate beyond the paradigm of material physics, they still operate as a result of cosmic laws and principles.
Magick, like miracles, are produced by intelligences initiating meta- and hyper-physical causes acting upon energy as the secondary cause. All phenomena are the children of Shiva and Shakti. Magick is a tool, and like all tools, is neutral in nature. Magick in its higher aspects, is the knowledge of the methodology of the application of the hidden powers and the innate faculties of the soul, working upon self or Nature, to successfully remove the obstacles of spiritual evolution and to accelerate the ascension process. We believe that man was created to express his creativity in various of ways in accord with the divine cosmic laws of the omniverse. Man, being made in the image of God, cannot help but grow to reflect his Maker on a microcosmic level. Human beings are to be fruitful and multiply on the mental and spiritual (metaphysical) levels, not solely on the physical.
In the hands of the ignorant and the foolish, magick can lead one astray from the goals of true religion, and the spiritual destiny of the soul; in the hands of the wise, however--not earthly wise, but spiritually wise--magick may lead one to the mystical union of the soul with the Spirit and accomplish the Great Work in an accelerated manner. The higher purpose of magick may be classed as theurgy and the lower as thaumaturgy. The path of magick should not be trodden without the wise guidance of the adepts, for without their supervision the novice might find himself sidetracking into byways, into what would eventually lead into suffering and misery, finding himself playing the part of the sorcerer's apprentice. But we have here digressed too far from our original topic, so we will speak further on talismans and expand on this in another article.
The Power of Talismans
We would like to discuss in greater detail of how talismans affect their bearers or their surroundings. It was intimated previously that talismans operates through the suggestive and magnetic principles. Talismans derive their power from the following :
Everything in the universe vibrates. We live in a cosmic ocean of energies, the omnipresent Shakti principle. The feminine polarity of the Godhead gives form to the seed bestowed upon her womb by the "Yang" masculine polarity. All things in the omniverse are therefore alive, and there is no such thing as "dead matter," only degrees of life and consciousness. It is said that "no man is an island," and this is true in the cosmic sense. Every particle of Spirit with its own peculiar nature, quality and vibration, affects and influences other particles in its vicinity with its radiations and magnetism, whether these be in a state of fission or considered radioactive or not. Every cell, every atomic particle or subatomic particle, possess the Yang and Yin principles, even if they are supposed to be "negatively" or "positively" charged, for the polarities may not reside on the same plane, just as man has a negative-charged physical body and a positive spiritual principle. Having both polarities, particles are therefore simultaneously magnetic and electric, and vibrate at a specific frequency. Frequencies of an octave have their corresponding frequencies at another level of the scale; as an example, the note "do" of all of the octaves harmonizes with one another. The waves set-up by the oscillation of a particle causes a resonation upon another particle vibrating with the same frequency, or upon an analogous particle on another octave. This relates to the "law of Correspondence."
The material used as a base for talismanic construction vibrates at a certain frequency. The magnetic emanations of the material, whether it be metallic, or non-metallic, affects physically the bloodstream, the autonomic nervous system, the ganglia and the cerebral system--and ultimately ones's psyche. Metaphysically speaking, the magnetism also impinges upon the psychic structure of man, the etheric channels, chakras, and the aura. Whatever quality of the magnetism of the material in question, produces a corresponding quality in the psycho-somatic system of man. One induces or awakens similar qualities in the other, just as a regular magnet induces its magnetism upon a nail by friction. Another magickal law is therefore invoked, the "law of Similarity." This law is terribly abused in black magick.
Traditionally, magickal designs on talismans may be composed of sigils, seals, kameas, symbols, glyphs, prayer verses, sacred characters and images. These images, symbols and sacred characters are physical counterparts of metaphysical points of light linked to their corresponding centers, the spiritual store-houses of energies in the macro- and microcosm. The material representation of these energies evoke the forces intended by the magician to conform to his will and purpose. They attract the appropriate spirit intelligences by their luminous glow upon the astral/etheric realms. The designs on talismans are not meant solely to be physical, they are likewise supposed to be constructed as living astral 4D structures--this the magickal practitioner should ever keep in mind.
Prayer verses are often inscribed on talismans and these may be in magickal scripts, like those found in Francis Barrett's "The Magus." In Ilmu al-Hikmah, Arabic is naturally used. Generally speaking, ancient or archaic languages are used in inscribing talismans as they are associated with a certain sense of mystique in the minds of enchanters and bearers of talismans. Archaic or magickal scripts evoke a sense of wonder and also protect the purpose of the talisman from being known by casual on-lookers.
When inscribed prayers are found in talismans, one of their function is to provide the user with the key of activation of the talisman where it appears. By chanting or reciting the prayer the bearer of the talisman would open up the gates in his consciousness for the power of the talisman, or the power that it represents to flow into his psycho-somatic system. The chanting likewise reinforces the power already present in the talisman. Some talismans function as symbolical notebooks of magickal rites or of occult disciplines. They silently speak to the initiated of secret processes to be undergone in order to attain some power, level of magickal expertise, or an expansion of consciousness.
The characters of the Hebrew and Arabic alphabets are extremely potent and magickal from the occult perspective. Practitioners of Ilmu al-Hikmah, for instance, believe that each character of the Arabic alphabet embodies a specific power and spirit familiars, or angelic guardians. These are called "khodams." Wherever these characters appears, the angelic forces are presumed to be present.
Symbols and images, unlike words, arouses the right hemisphere of the brain, the side associated with the imaginative, subconscious, and magickal aspect of man. Their contemplation awakens intuition and the psychic faculties. Images on talismans represent the embodied force and impresses strongly upon the psyche the intent of the consecrated object with its magickal influence. They act as constant reminders and supporters of the intent of the enchanter or bearer.
Talismanic matrixes require their purpose of being to be optimized by the influx of an appropriate force. As psychobiological creatures, we are surrounded by a sea of forces and are affected thereby, eventhough normally unconscious of their impact and influence. These energies affect us for good or ill. Ignorance of forces with negative impact does not rid oneself of them, it simply prolongs one's subjugation to them. Universal forces are no respecter of persons.
In the consecration rite, the magician attunes and invokes the appropriate force that would support the manifestation of his will and channels/condenses it into a talismanic matrix. By doing this, the enchanter would be constantly surrounded and influenced by the required force thus awakening the coveted virtue or manifesting the desired effect, even neutralizing impinging forces deleterious to the health and mundane activities. This is one way whereby the mage becomes a director of forces and not their slaves. Blind faith is incapable of emancipating one from maya; it takes gnostic awareness, knowledge, and understanding; and the living of the Truth to liberate one.
The forces invoked by the mage are associated with the cosmic rays, the elements, prana, the powers and virtues of cosmic/spirit beings, egregores, etc.
Previously we mentioned that angelic khodams are associated with the letters of the Arabic alphabet. For certain purposes, the magician might find it necessary to attach a spirit familiar to a talisman. From such practices come "tales" of genies in bottles, Alladin's ring and lamp, King Solomon's brazen vessel containing spirits, etc.
Attaching spirits to a talismanic object is often done deliberately; there are cases, though, where spirits attach themselves because of a certain attraction that they feel toward the energy present in a talisman or as an obligation, being the energy's guardian and regulator. Angels, for instance, are servers of the energies that they embody. They may be requested to be present in the proximity of the talisman containing their force; often however, they carry-out this task without any demand by the magician.
A type of spirit familiar often attached by magicians to talismanic objects is the pseudo-being called servitor. These servitors are thought-forms (mental constructs) created with astral--mental ("kama-manas") substances and vivified with pranic energies. They are programmed to serve in a manner desired by the practitioner. Although a product of the magician, these servitors assume an independent, quasi-sentient existence. Talismanic objects act as a home-base for the servitors.
No matter what type of spirit familiar employed, they influence the subconscious mind and energy-structure of the bearer or those around him. The more intelligent and powerful sort are also able to interact and modify the physical environment in some way. Familiar spirits may produce hallucinations and illusions in the minds of those seeking to harm the bearer of the talisman, to inspire and encourage its master in some beneficial way, and to generally assist in magickal operations.
Belief is a strong influential principle. Beliefs are one of the causal factors shaping our reality. What we believe in has a tendency to occur or seemingly appear in our lives. Suggestions strengthens beliefs, and these gradually become an attitude. Positive suggestions awakens a positive state of mind, and this is most of the time sufficient enough to create beneficial changes in one's life. It takes a change in attitude and understanding to overcome misery and suffering.
Suggestion may awaken dormant inner faculties and powers. For so long we have disbelieved in our personal psychic abilities that we have caused to prolong their latency in the soul--abilities that humanity once possessed. It was suggestion and negation that killed the extra-sensory faculties, it is suggestion and belief that will help to resurrect them. It takes faith in the principles involved, in ourselves, in our divine nature, to cultivate and nourish the harmonious relationship between the various levels of consciousness. Faith opens psychic portals within us that allows the influx of spiritual energies--energies that causes psychological transmutation.
The presence of a talisman on one's person acts as a suggestion to the subconscious mind. Faith in God's power residing in the talisman and what it represents builds up the power within our psyche and etheric centers so that the talismanic virtue would manifest when triggered by the mind should the necessity be felt. Our faith should not be directed to the talisman per se, but to the presence of the divine force of Allah. Faith and belief keeps one's talisman alive.
Before commencing the instructions on talismanic construction we had felt it necessary for the reader to fully understand the rationale of talismans, its utility, and underlying purpose. Although our explanations have been succinct, we feel that it is sufficient for the novice-practitioner to grasp the essentials and to impel further research and study. We do not claim to have the ultimate word on the subject.
In certain articles and pages on this site may be found various talismans for assorted purposes. As we could not explain their construction in detail in those pages we will herewith in this paper describe talisman-making in general and the principles to be followed. This will be instructed primarily from the methodology of Ilmu al-Hikmah, nevertheless, the steps are similar in the Western tradition. If you desire to construct a planetary talisman from the Greater Key of Solomon, for instance, the process herein described may be followed. The steps outlined by us utilizes the keys found in Ilmu al-Hikmah and occult teachings in general.
After mastering the basics, theoretically speaking, of talismanic-construction, the novice of the Islamic al-Hikmah tradition might commence by searching for the talismanic designs that suit the purpose intended. These may be found in abundance in the old Arabic books by ancient authors and occultists. We are well aware that very few of these books have been translated into western languages, nevertheless, as this site develops with new articles, we will present many talismans for assorted purposes (some may already be found on our site). Those interested in furthering their knowledge on talismanic magick from the Ilmu al-Hikmah perspective might consider studying the teachings of the Angelic College of Damkar, for there are many principles that will not be mentioned here. But rest assured, what is conveyed in this paper is sufficient enough for the novice to produce a functional talisman.
Keys to Making a Functional Talisman
Before delineating the steps to talismanic construction we
would like to briefly describe certain keys that are conducive to
proper talismanic constructions :
1) Preparation of Materials Prepare the materials that you will need for your talismanic construction rite: magickal pen/engraver, parchments/metal plates, oils, incense, candles, altar, etc.
2) Time and Day In the Western Tradition the planetary hours and days are strictly adhered to. The hour and day chosen depending upon the purpose of the talisman. For instance, if it is for love, Friday or Monday is chosen together with the related planetary hour; if for prosperity and riches--Thursday or Sunday is picked at a period when Jupiter or the Sun is in their full strength.
The phase of the moon is also considered. Generally, when we wish to build or acquire something new, the rite should be conducted during the waxing moon; if it is for banishing or eliminating a certain condition, the waning moon is chosen.
We will not get into detail of the planetary hours and days here as they can be found in various occult books and in other sites dealing with magick. Although the observation of planetary hours are taught in Ilmu al-Hikmah for certain magickal rites (these are calculated on the same basis as the western system), this seem to be disregarded in talismanic-making by some adepts, as far as the writer is able to discover. Instead, an entirely different principle is strictly adhered to. The adept-enchanters construct talismans on certain periods of the days most favorable for making talismans. Different days have different auspicious periods for talismanic rites. Below we present a table of the day and the best time for talismanic construction no matter what their purpose.
The novice might well inquire as to the most effective of the two systems, our reply is to tune-in to the prevailing energies during those periods and feel for onself as to their strength and nature. The stronger the energies of the sort required by the enchanter is obviously the best time to conduct the talismanic construction rite. The mage develops his own time table.
3) Holy Wash Before entering your magickal working area, carry-out an ablution. Wash your arms, legs, and face--visualizing light eliminating the gross substances from your being. Pray to the Most High that you will be cleansed of all impurities, physical, psychological and metaphysical.
4) Preparation of the Working Space Having chosen a quiet, clean room for your rite, light the candles and incense (these implements likewise require some purification and magnetization--however, we will not discuss them here), and prepare it further by forming a protective shield around it. Please see Protection of Space and Ilmu Khodam--the Occult Art of Acquiring and Directing Spirit Servants for some methods. A simple rite of protection is to visualize a sphere of golden-white light around your room while reciting the Throne verse 33x :
One may also prepare the altar or magickal place with the color and symbols of the power or ray of the god/ess or Divine Name of the talismanic purpose. Every mundane or magickal purpose comes under the jurisdiction of one of the "gods" or Divine Names. The novice would do well to study mythology.
6) Accumulation of Energy Do some rhythmic breathing. Inhale, hold, and exhale in a cycle of 7-7-7 counts. Repeat several times. Then imagine a stream of white-golden light entering your crown chakra from a spiritual source as you inhale for the 7 count. As you hold the breath, imagine the acquired force revitalizing every cell and psychic center of your body. Then exhale as you see yourself glowing with life. After several repetitions of the foregoing, chant the following prayer verse:
5) Direction to Face While conducting talismanic construction rites, there are directions that one must not face. The purpose is to avoid misaligning one's biomagnetic-field with certain earth currents that would disrupt the influx and outflux of spiritual force. Check the table below for directions.
7) Opening Prayer Before commencing the inscription, recite the following verses :
8) Attunement Recite an appropriate Divine Name related to the purpose of the talisman while in a meditative state. The number of recitations depending upon the chosen Name. Alternatively, if one is applying the principles of Western magick, assume the appropriate god-form of your chosen pantheon while chanting their name for the number of times it takes to acquire an inner, psychic response. Some talismanic designs are accompanied with specific prayers. These may be recited in this step.
11) License to Depart Offer a prayer of thanks to the intelligences invoked during the rite and bid them to return to their natural habitat. Recite "Allahu Akbar" 33x. If the rite was opened by the invoking pentagrams of the Western magickal tradition, banishment may be done in accordance to it.
Talisman making can be quite fun eventhough rather laborious. Joy is felt knowing that one's work would bring blessings to a needy soul or two. Thanks ought to be expressed to the Divine One for revealing to humanity the secret arts that would help raise men and women from their low estate to a dignified level.
The procedure for making talismans is simple and gives lots of leeway for improvisation. In exigencies, a talisman may even be constructed within a few minutes by the seasoned practitioner endowed with power--without any undue preparation.The above process is merely a guideline and is not to be regarded as the only method of operation. Crystalized teachings leaves no room for improvement. Ever keep in mind that certain talismanic forms may require its own unique consecration process.
It is our hope that the occult apprentice would find this article an invaluable guide and support for his/her magickal labour.
Copyright © 2001 Luxamore
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