What is the Hamsa Hand?
The Hamsa Hand is a common symbol especially in the Middle East that is believed to offer good fortune, happiness, peace, and protection. A person who has the Hamsa Hand is said to be protected from negative energies from sources such as the Evil Eye, a malevolent glare cast by other people which brings misfortune, suffering, injury, or just general bad luck to the recipient of the look.
The meaning and interpretation of the Hamsa Hand varies from culture to culture. That said, the Hamsa Hand is a peaceful and positive symbol that provides its owner with protection. The symbol is known by different names within separate cultures. Some of the common names for the Hamsa Hand are; the Khamsa, Hand of Miriam, Hand of Fatima, or the Hand of Mary. The symbol is often associated with a female entity that provides strength and protection to the owner, but can also symbolize the Hand of God.
What does the Hamsa Hand look like?
The Hamsa Hand is depicted as an open right palm. The symbol generally has two styles. The first shape is shaped just as a regular hand with a thumb and pinkie finger. The other style is more popular. It is shaped like a hand with two symmetrical thumbs. There are also more stylized depictions of the Hamsa Hand. These styles include five circles which represent the fingers of the hand. These circles are placed around a central circle which represents an open palm. An open palm is a common symbol which represents power, blessings, and strength.
The Hamsa Hand is often worn as an amulet on a necklace. It can be worn with the fingers either facing up or down. The meaning of the symbol varies depending on which way the fingers face. When the hand is worn facing down, it is a symbol that invites abundance, luck, fertility, and goodness into your life. When worn facing up, the hand is a more powerful symbol that protects you from negative energy and against the Evil Eye.
The Hamsa Hand can also have different meanings depending on the symbols depicted within the hand itself. The Hamsa Hand often has another symbol at the center to represent a more specific offering or meaning to the owner. The most common symbols found at the center of the Hamsa Hand are eyes and fish.
Hamsa Hand with Eye
The Hamsa Hand with an Eye at the center is one of the most common depictions of the symbol. The eye at the center of the Hand “sees everything”, thus offering the owner with further protection.
Hamsa Hand with fish:
The Hamsa Hand with a fish symbol at the center is also very common. The fish is a symbol of good luck. Fish are also immune to the effects of the Evil Eye since they live in water. This provides the wearer with more protection.
The Hamsa Hand is very popular both in the Middle East and in Western cultures. It is often found in pieces of jewellery, especially in the form of an amulet. The Hamsa Hand is also commonly depicted on home decor items, key rings, and wall art.
History of the Hamsa Hand
Although the Hamsa Hand is most commonly used in Islamic faith and Judaism, the symbol dates back hundreds of years, all the way back to the Phoenicia civilization (2500-539 BC). The symbol represented the hand of their goddess Tanit and was used to offer protection and to avert the Evil Eye.
The use of the Hamsa Hand in Judaism can be traced back to Biblical times. It was referenced as the “strong Hand of God” in the book of Deuteronomy. In the Ten Commandments, the strong hand of God is interpreted as the Hamsa and symbolizes the helping hand of God.
The meaning of the Hamsa Hand in different cultures
The meaning of the Hamsa Hand varies in different cultures and religions. The hand is used as a symbol in Islam, Judaism, Christianity and Buddhism. Each faith has a different interpretation of the symbol. The name Hamsa is derived from ‘hamsa’ or ‘hamesh’, which translates to the number five. This number has special symbolic meaning in both slam and Judaism.
In Judaism, the Hamsa Hand is referred to as the Hand of Miriam, after the sister of Moses and Aaron. The Hand symbolizes the Hand of God. It also represents the five books of the Torah as well as the fifth letter of the Hebrew alphabet, “Hey”, which is one of God’s holy names. The Hand of Miriam and its association with the number five reminds the owner of the Hand to use their five senses while praising God. The Hand of Miriam is a very holy and respected symbol in Judaism and is commonly used in “Ketubah” (marriage contracts), as well as during Passover.
In Islam, the Hamsa Hand is referred to as the Hand of Fatima. It is named after the daughter of prophet Muhammad. The five fingers of the Hand represent the Five Pillars of Islam, especially by the unni denomination. To the Shia denomination, the five fingers of the Hand is seen as a symbol of the Five People of the Cloak.
In Christianity, the Hamsa Hand is referred to as the Hand of Mary, after the Virgin Mary. The Hand in Christianity symbolizes power, strength, and femininity. The Hand of Mary is usually depicted with a fish symbol in the center.
In Buddhism, the Hamsa Hand is believed to symbolize the different senses or chakras, as well as the energies that flow within one’s body. The fingers of the hand represent the different elements or chakras. These include water, air, fire, earth, and ethereal elements. It also represents the throat, heart, solar plexus, sacral, and root chakras.
Due to the significance of the Hamsa Hand in Arabic and Berber cultures, it is the national symbol of Algeria. The Hamsa Hand appears in the country’s emblem.
The Hamsa Hand is also the national symbol of Algeria due to its significance in the Berber and Arabic cultures. It even appears in the country’s emblem. Recently, the symbol has been adopted by activists in the Middle East, where there is ongoing conflict and war. It is used as a symbol of peace, showing the similarities between religions, especially between Jewish and Arab cultures. The Hamsa Hand is worn to bring people together by highlighting the common ground shared by their religions.
We also have other guides to meanings behind symbols that you can check out. Here are some of them: Meaning of the lotus flower, Meaning of mandalas, Meaning of the Dharma Wheel, Meaning of the Flower of Life, Meaning of the Tree of Life, Meaning of elephants, Meaning of the evil eye, Meaning of Dreamcatchers.