The History of the evil eye

September 30, 2016

suffering, and bad luck on whoever is in its path. Oftentimes, the victim is someone who is undeserving of admiration and has had too much good fortune.

Evidence has shown that the Evil Eye originated in ancient Greece and Rome. As we stated above, the Evil Eye was a threat to people who received praise beyond what was truly deserved - inflation of the ego. Having such false pride validated the Gods’ and Goddesses’ punishments, including physical and mental illness.

In Hindu culture, it is believed that the eye is the strongest part of the body which exudes energy. Moreover, Hindus believe jealousy is at the core of the Evil Eye’s power. When an individual is experiencing a great deal of change in their life, they are most susceptible to its powers. Any form of the Evil Eye in Hindu culture is undesirable as it can result in bad luck, namely in the form of dried up supplies of milk from cows. Because of this, some Hindus will offer a bowl of milk to the person who is thought to be glancing with an Evil Eye.

Elsewhere in the world, including South America and Europe, the symbol and superstition varies slightly. In Brazil, “Evil Eye” is synonymous with “fat eye”, and sincere compliments are not to be feared; however, insincere compliments can put one at risk. Throughout Europe, various facial features and genetic qualities were seen as possessors of the Evil Eye “look”. These features included eye colour, eye shape, and even unibrows.

Lastly in Islamic culture, quite similar to other societies, too much praise will essentially result in the demise of the recipient. Rather than congratulating a child on their good fortune and to evade any negative consequences, it is preferred to begin any sort of compliment with “God has willed”. As you will notice through all of these examples, the end goal is to minimize the ego, emphasizing modesty and humility.

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