Assyrians have a strong belief in Al-‘ayn (the evil eye curse), this is a belief which has been since ancient times in Mesopotamia. It is claimed that if an individual stares at someone/something with jealousy, they have the capacity to harm them, and this harm can be over people, animals or objects.

This evil eye is triggered by envy, it is believed that this typically happens unintentionally and the individual who casts the evil eye is typically not guilty of doing it with malous. Some people in Islamic countries believe that a person may experience the evil eye as a result of an “unfavorable cosmic arrangement” at the moment of their birth.

Symptoms of the evil eye

The symptoms caused from the evil eye curse include:

-headache and fever,


– depression,

– mood changes,

-physical harm,

-financial loss.

How do Assyrians prevent the evil eye?

One of the rituals to ward off the evil eye curse in Islamic world is to say “TabarakAllah” (“Blessings of God” in Arabic languange) or “Masha’Allah” (“God has willed it”) before giving someone a compliment.

Assyrians also believe that the evil eye chanr has the ability to ward off the curse. The Assyrian Evil Eye symbol is quite different from other countries’ amulets. This charm has two holes that represent two eyes in the shape of an oval turquoise bead. Typically, this pendant can be found in gold or silver metal and is worn as protective jewelry by both children and adults.

Another practice that Assyrian have adapted, is making a cross with their hands while pointing their middle and index fingers in the direction of the source. By doing this, the harmful energies leave the victim and return to their source.

You can observe the precautions people take to safeguard themselves from the evil eye curse and will realise the prevalence of the evil eye concept and its effects across Assyria. The evil eye superstition has its roots in ancient Mesopotamia’s cultures and their descendants have kept this tradition alive.

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