The creation of amulets and talismans has the power to lead us into a mindful approach to healing. Amulets and talismans are simply physical objects that are believed to have powers to cause good things to happen. When we create these, we step into the realm of self-inquiry, slowing down into the moment before us. In engaging our hearts and our hands, our rough edges are soothed and the still, small voice within has the opportunity to speak. Engaging with visual language allows us to experience our inner lives in a rich, heartwarming way. The act of getting lost in the process gently allows us to let go of things we no longer need and wander into the land of renewal and healing.
Humans have always needed a little help from time to time in coping with the complications of our unpredictable earthly lives. It is fascinating to ponder how our communication methods have evolved and how the role of creating things has played in that development. Somewhere along the way, there was a need for a visual symbolic language, and we’ve been fine-tuning it for over 50,000 years. Why we make art can lead us into numerous interesting conversations, but my feeling is that we needed visual reminders to guide our thoughts and questions of what it is to be human. Our ancestors’ dynamic hand paintings are found throughout the world, held within protected caves. We can understand these ancient symbols as visual messages yearning to connect with the realm beyond, reaching for what is beyond physical.
Amulets and talismans were birthed out of this longing to connect with forces outside ourselves, forces that could comfort and guard us from the dangers of life. All cultures and spiritual traditions have them. For the ancient Egyptians, it was the protective Eye of Horus; for Christians, it’s the cross. Healing Icons favors ones from Tibet.