Good luck charms are trinkets of various sizes and shapes and believed to be sources of good fortune. They are found in every culture and include horseshoes, charm bracelets, the swastik, Oms, acorns, keys and lockets.
Nuts and horseshoes
A previously worn horseshoe placed in the top right corner of the door frame is said to bring good luck into the house. An inverted horseshoe accomplishes the opposite effect. In Asia, there are 38 varieties of the Rudraksh tree. The nuts of this tree, found in the Himalayas, Malaysia and Indonesia, represent Lord Shiva, a part of the Hindu trinity. The nuts are used to make rosaries to chant mantras by and are thought to bring spiritual powers, fame, possessions and good health.
Yantras and talismans
Yantras, or talismans, repel bad luck, as opposed to bringing good luck. While found in almost every culture, yantras are especially treasured on the Indian sub-continent and in Tibetan culture. The yantra is drawn, painted or inscribed on a variety of materials, including cloth, paper, metal and wood. Illustrations of yantras and how they provide protection can be found in a vast number of Indian and Tibetan texts. The most popular uses for yantras are love charms and acquiring wealth, although protection and casting curses are other popular uses.
Lockets and bracelets
Lockets are believed to have special effects because they are carried so close to the wearer. There are several variations, including the four-leaf clover, yantra and swastik. The lucky charm bracelet is closely related and worn for the same purpose of attracting good luck.
The swastik is a symbol of the Hindu lord of good fortune; swastik is a Sanskrit word that means "purveyor of good fortune." The swastik is worn in a clockwise direction and should not be confused with the Nazi swastika. The Nazis polluted the Hindu sign of good fortune and rotated it 45 degrees and is not considered to bring good luck.
Oms and the mantra
The Om, or Aum, takes its name from the word used when chanting a mantra. The symbol can be found on the forehead of a temple elephant and is thought to represent luck, spiritual powers and worldly comfort. Believing in the power of the om is said to blend the individual consciousness with the infinite powers of the universe.
Charms to attract love
There are only a handful of charms that are said to attract the opposite sex. An acorn, or oak apple, is said to possess that power, along with bringing the gift of youth and wealth. A trio of keys can also bring love.
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