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hounds we have as cure-charms its milt, suet, milk, tongue,
shank, and dung. Of harts, the marrow, horn, shank,
cheek and shorn j and of bulls, the horns, blood, gall,
marrow, and dung. The last might refer to wild cattle or
tame, but when we read of barleycorns and ears of wheat
as charms we know that when they were enounced man had
become a cultivator of the earth. One charm carries us
back to the time when, like the Bushman and the
Eskimo, the prehistoric man tore open his victim, and
plunging his head in the still palpitating carcase, gluttonised
on the ebbing blood. " If a man drink a creeping thing
in water, let him cut instantly into a sheep and drink the
sheep's blood hot." (Leechdom, II. p. 115.)

The old nature-worship still lingers in innumerable
forms of charms and ceremonies attached to animal and
herb spells, or mystic customs. There it is a well endowed
with an occult virtue to cure a special complaint only, it
may bo insanity, skin disease, ague, or the complaints of
women ; it may be something taken in the moon's increase



120 THE EVOLUTION OF CHARMS AND

or waning, or the full moon, or kneeling with the bare
knees on an earthfast stone. A very early form of water-
worship may be recognized in the charm for a woman who
cannot rear her child : she was to take milk from a cow of
one colour in her hand, sup it in her mouth, then go to a
running stream, spew the milk therein, and after this
offering, with the same hand she was to ladle up a mouthful
of water, saying a word-charm. (Ibid. III. p. 69.)

In some cases we have strange mixtures of the old forms
and customs of Paganism and Christian rites and usances.
The moon-worship blended with that of the Virgin, Pagan
charms drunk out of a church-bell, and masses sang over a
wort concocted of a solution of herbs, animal ordure, or
brains. Eunes were crossed with Alpha and Omega, or T
for Trinity made doubly potent a Norse-word charm.
Many of the rites and ceremonies are mimicked in charm
forms. We read of holy water being sprinkled to cure a
sick pig ; a young man being cured of fits by being taken
to church at midnight, when he was to take a handful of
earth from the newest grave. With some, if a man, to be
effective it must come off a woman's grave, and if a
woman, from a man's grave. Confirmation is with some
esteemed a cure for rheumatism, and some have sought the
remedy a second time from the bishop's hands for after
complaints. So rings consecrated on Good Friday cured
cramp, and fretfulness in children was cured by baptism,
and there were many forms of cure by making crosses or
repeating incantations to Christ, the Virgin, or the Trinity,
and there were curative virtues in repeating Ave Marias,
Paternosters, and the Creed. We might quote the cases
of occult virtue in sacramental money or bread or wine.

As associated with the church, we may note the many
charms that are made from skull, bones, or grass from a
churchyard, and to get a dead hand from a grave one
possesses a most potent charm. We read in the Journal
of American Folklore : " In Washington, the graves of
paupers are not infrequently violated for the purpose of



SPELLS IN THE INDIVIDUAL MIND. 121

obtaining a hand or arm. Detached portions of the dead
hand are quite commonly used for some lucky influence they
bring" (I. p. 83).

In the evolution of charms into principles of supernal
power omens served as the stepping-stones to prophecies.
To see a sign readily led to affirming as a fact the advent
of the change. This occurs every day now, not only in
weather-lore, but in forms of sickness. In fact, the
impression, the portent, the monition, the omen, and the
prophecy, glide imperceptibly into each other. Often what
we wish wo affirm that we see, and the man or beast fore-
spoken is already foredoomed. We have seen that the
tendency to prophesy may be organic naturally with regard
to the weather and general appearances; it is instinctive,
assuming the character of our feelings and impulses, more
especially under certain mental states or influences. Hence
the inspirations of ecstatics, the weird prophecies induced
by toxics, and the mental conversion of occult dreams into
the present realizations of the mysteries of the future.

All and every form in which the future is rehearsed in
the present, perceptibly or mentally, is by men accepted as
a supernal intimation, and which may not only come as
an occult intimation from the object itself, but may bo
divined through the occult powers possessed by men. Thus
divination in its many forms are parts of the same chain
of causes and effects we have recognized in premonitions and
prophecies, and alike imply the vast influence that supernal
.sentiments have evolved in the human mind.

Many assumed forms of prophecy only intimate the
M-initific explanation of the necessary associations and
timal changes in things, whether denoting atmosplu nV
influences, the motions of the heavenly bodies, the course
of disease, or alterations by growth. The distinction in
this respect between the philosopher and the savage, is one
of education rather than principle : the one sees objects and
:.ta present to his perceptive powers through the



122 THE EVOLUTION OP CHARMS AND

medium of his emotions, feelings, and previous imaginings ;
the other tests such presentations by the known laws of
their formation, and the connection therewith deduced by
his judgment ; hence the change which the one affirms
as the natural sequence of organic relations the other re-
cognizes as a manifestation of occult power, and the range
of these deductions marks the progress of man, and the
decline of the belief in supernals whether in the form of
divination or prophecy.

There is much in weather prognostics as true to the
savage as to the scientific man. Like conditions always
resolve into like results. Hence, the halo round the moon
indicated coming rain to the savage in the past and present
as well as to the observant farmer. Both might equally
note the toad coming out to look for the rain, and the bees
going home to avoid it ; but their deductions from these
special habits differed essentially. What one recognized
as instinct, may-be acquired knowledge, was seen by the
other to present the influence of an occult power working
on the toad and the bee. That the presence of such
powers should endow rooks and various beasts and birds
with prophetic powers or the capacity to divine the future,
and present such an interpretation as an omen to men
readily occurred to the one, while the other only read theii
various volitions as their natural movements under certain
atmospheric conditions. There were many natural appear-
ances incipient science could not explain. Need we wonder,
then, that savage man when he had evolved the ghost-
spirit saw in the supernal personalities, thereby educed, a
ready explanation of cloud-forms, eclipses, and thunder-
forces ? Nothing was more easy than for the spirit-power
which rode on the dust-column, hurled the lightning, or
vainly devoured the moon, to intimate the courses it in-
tended to manifest in the clouds or through the monitions
of birds and beasts.

Of prescient powers in or possesssd by animals we have



SPELLS IN THE INDIVIDUAL MIND. 123

many intimations. Some, no doubt, are spirit manifestations,
or deemed such, as when dogs are said to see ghosts, and
cocks to see evil spirits; even the pig to see the wind;
but the crowing of a hen or the howling of a dog before
a death, no more indicates spirit influence than does the
production of hens if the eggs are set when the tide was
ebbing, or cocks at a rising tide. "We are all familiar with
the knowingness of a dog, but we can scarcely admit that
he eats grass to tell us that it is going to rain. Still less
can we ascribe to a ghost the assumed power in an egg if
broken on the edge of a glass, holding a little water to
indicate by the flowing of the albumen the prognostics of
the diviner's future life. We can conceive of such invisible
ghost-forms as Juno and Minerva in the Iliad warding off
the weapons of assailants from their mortal friends, but we
cannot see a present spirit-power in the position the point
of the sickle takes when the reaper divines by it after
throwing it over his left shoulder. Surely we need not
ascribe to a spirit the prophecy that a child born feet first
would live to be hanged, or that a ghost has anything to
do with divination by cups drawing lots the direction a
crumb of bread falls, or that in which a thrown staff lies.
The occult sentiment present in any of these contingencies
exists only in the operator's mind. What has a ghost to
do with the protective or prescient powers in garlic, in
stones, in an iron nail or horse-shoe ; where is the ghost
presence in a sign, a mark, a look, in the blood from the
tail of a black cat, or in the charm concocted of many
ingredients ?

We may trace in some cases the history of the evolution
of charms ; and from these we feel assured that the oldest,
the most numerous, and those asserted over the largest
area are wholly impersonal objects, times, or seasons which
appealed to the occult sentiment of tho canny or uncanny
in the human mind. The child sees the canny and tho
uncanny long before it personifies objects, and speaks to



124 THE EVOLUTION OF CHARMS AND

the sun and animals and toys as if they were endowed
with the same faculties as itself ; so it is with the savage ;
and there is no concept of ghost present to his mind when
he endows the sun, moon, and stars, the dog, cat, bird, and
plant, with the same powers that he recognizes in himself
and fellows. The folklore animal, or sun, river, or moun-
tain-fable, long antedate any mystic tale that assigns to
them spirit attributes. Here is one illustration of the
evolution of the ghost theory from the nature personality.
Pettigrew in his Medical Superstitions writes : " Melton
says the saints of the Romanists have usurped the place of
the zodiacal constellations in the governance of the parts of
a man's body. Thus, St. Ohlia keeps the head instead of
Aries; St. Blasius governs the neck instead of Taurus;
St. Lawrence keeps the back and shoulders instead of
Gemini, Cancer, and Leo. St. Erasmus rules the belly
in place of Libra and Scorpius " (p. 36). In like manner
every known disease controlled by a spell or nature-power
was taken under the curative charge of some saint, and the
virtues once possessed by a holystone, a topaz, or heliotrope,
a snake, or toad-stone, were dispensed by a saint. The
spirit may even take the form of the snake, toad, or other
animal that personified the healing-well or stone of power.
Thus at the holy well near Carrick-on-Suir, the trout no
doubt were the original potent agents, as only when they
were present did the waters hold the healing virtue ; now
it is the holy saints Quan and Brogwan who become little
fishes to give the waters their virtue. (Ibid. p. 40.)

In tracing the output of charms and spells we note that
they are universal among men in the present as in the past,
and that faith in their protective agencies preceded the
differentiation of spirit sentiments ; we are assured all the
old great religions of the world are founded on spells and
charms, and cognate supernal ideas. We can trace these
curative, protective, and prescient powers as well as all the
supersensuous powers as applied at first as impersonal



SPELLS IN THE INDIVIDUAL MIND. 125

influences, and subsequently associated with the after
evolved ghosts, spirits, and gods. We detect in all the
fetish nature rites and ceremonies, in the sacrifices, in
the forms of adoration, in the customary dances, tabus of
food and concepts of pollution and purification, the pres-
ence of the early sentiments regarding charms and spells.
The conception of supernal impersonal induced disease is
present in the earliest and lowest human associations, and
as impersonal powers to injure they are blended in all the
old faiths with the spirit-induced disease, and that even
may be cast off by impersonal spells. All phallic worship
in its incidence represents charms and spells; so with the
customary relations of the sexes, and the organic changes
they present.

The sacred books of Iran, the sacred books of India,
teem with evidences that tell us they were preceded by a
religion of charms, spells, and impersonal fetish concepts.
The powers exhibited by the earliest priests and Brahmans
all affect the low supernal attributes of the modern medicine-
man in his lowest fetish character. Fear of the uncanny,
dread of pollution of a material nature, the enforcement of
charm purifications, and bodily and food tabus are general
as now with savage races. In the Gatha's, the Zendavesta,
and the Bundahis, we have many direct and more indirect
affirmations of their conceptions of mysterious powers and
principles; even in the modern customs and mental ex-
pressions of the Parsees we have as it were the fossilized
records of primary thoughts, the then highest supernal
aspirations of the Iranian soul.

Before the spirit sentiment was evolved, the various
impersonal powers and fetish concepts were evolved the
doctrines of spells, charms, and divination. These must
have become of a very defined nature or wo should not
li;ive had them combined with the after evolved spirit-idea,
and these impersonal sentiments prominently characterize
modern Parseo faith. The rolls of baresma rods used in



126 THE EVOLUTION OP CHARMS AND

their rites and ceremonies, and formerly invoked in their
wars with the Turanian savage Danus, were not spirit-
powers, but impersonal spell-powers, so were all the fetish
concepts of pollution from women, from dead bodies and
dead dogs. The powers of purification presented are
charms, not spiritual cleansings. As spell-compounds the
Visparad refers to the preparation of sacred waters, the
consecration of certain offerings by fetish spells as the
sacred bread, the branches of homa, the branch of the
pomegranate endowed with mystic powers, the Parahoma r
fruits, butter, hair, fresh milk, and flesh, which by being^
carried round the fire as a spell become endowed with
supernal attributes. The fetish sacred ferment Homa, long
before it became a god spirit, was only a mystic impersonal
spell. At first it was repudiated by the semi-moral Zer-
dushta, as we read in the Gathas, the fathers of the
families could not but repudiate the excesses it produced ;
but when the spirit Homa appeared to Zerdushta in a
dream, he accepted it as a source of material as well as
supernal influence. Then he praised it in its branches,
its juice, the clouds and rain that made it grow, the
mountain which formed its body, and the earth that bore
it. Fire, too, before it became a god, was an impersonal
fetish power. It had five spell-attributes : one, that of
burning; another as the good diffuser, which enters into
men and aids digestion ; that of the Aurvazist, which gives
growth and special power to plants ; and that of the
Vazist, which produces motion and form in the clouds. It
was by a mighty spell that the primary Medicine Archangel
Amerodad produced the many species of plants. He
pounded the small plants then on the earth together in a
mortar, mixed them with water, after which Tistar, the great
star, poured them as rain on the earth, on which plants
sprang up as thick as the hair on a man's head. One of
the most singular fetish spell-powers described in the
Yendidad is that affirmed to be contained in the parings of



SPELLS IN THE INDIVIDUAL MIND. 127

the nails of the fingers and the toes, the hairs that cling in
the comb or in the lather after shaving, to allow them to
come within twenty paces of a fire, thirty of water, or fifty
from consecrated bundles of baresma, was a grievous
charm. " Look here, Ashozusta bird, here are the nails
for thee ; may they be for thee so many spears, knives,
bones, falcon-winged arrows and sling-stones against the
Mazainya Daevas." (Sac. Books East, IV. p. 188.)

There are contained in the Vendidad and in several of
the yasts many references to the primary faith in charms
and spells. It would appear that in Iran all evil influences
on the output of the spirit-sentiment were gradually trans-
ferred to the then conceived evil spirit, the fiend Drugs.
Yet not only are there texts, which are spells to coerce
these spirit-powers, but wo also have spell-forms of the
most primitive type, both curative and protective, in which
no concept of spirit-influence is presented, and others in
which the power of the medicine-man is presented to work
the charm and the counter-charm through the attainment
of supernal power of an advanced character, acquired by
unremitting fetish austerities. The whole of the sacred
writings of Iran are permeated by the fear of uncanny
impersonal dreads, and the appeal to spells to withstand
them. Disease, death, and pollution are always treated as
spells ; they are counteracted, influenced, or expelled by
charms. In some instances wo have spells enacted as crude
as any now presented by savage races, and mystic fetish
impersonal objects are as powerful as the after developed
spirits and gods. In the Bahran Yast wo read, " If I
have a curse thrown upon me, a spell told upon me, by the
many men who hate mo, what is the remedy for it ? "
Ahura Mazda answered, " Take thou a feather of that bird
with feathers, the Varengana (raven). With that feather
thou shalt rub thy own body ; with that feather thou shalt
curse back thine enemies. If a man holds a bone of that
strong bird, or a feather of that strong bird, no one can



128 THE EVOLUTION OF CHARMS AND

smite or turn to flight that fortunate man. The feather
of that bird of flight brings him help." (Sac. Books of the
East, XXIII. p. 241.) James Darmesteter shows, in the
accompanying note, that a similar spell is recorded in the
Shah Namah. When Rudabah's flank was opened to bring
forth Rustem, her wound was healed by rubbing it with a
Simurgh's feather. Rustem, also wounded to death, is
cured by the same charm feather.

Among all savage and semi-savage races all the changes
in a woman's secretions, all the incidences of childbirth,
are esteemed as denoting the power of spells ; she and the
child are ever considered as under the influence of fetish
impersonal spells which have to be counteracted by purifying
charms. Spells and charms for this purpose are so highly
esteemed in the Zendavesta that we find them repeated
twice in the Yendidad (Ibid. IV. pp. 226 and 227), and in the
Vistasp Yast (Ibid. XXIII. p. 341) . "Thou shalt keep away
the evil by this holy spell. Of thee, O child, I will cleanse
the birth and growth ; of thee, O woman, I will make the
body and strength pure. I make thee a woman rich in
children and rich in milk, a woman rich in seed, in
milk, and in offspring. For thee I shall make springs run
and flow towards the pastures that will give food to the
child." The commentator, James Dermesteter, writes that
the spell refers to the cleansing and generative powers
of the waters. The spell was probably pronounced to
facilitate childbirth. Of another spell it is said, <f Let
not that spell be shown to anyone except by the father to his
son, or by the brother to his brother from the same womb, or
by Athravan to his pupil in black hair/' (Ibid. XXIII. p. 51 .)
The Ardibehist Yast terms the invocation or prayer to
Airayman as, " It is the greatest of spells, it is the best of
spells, the fairest of spells, the fearful one amongst spells,
the firmest of spells, the victorious amongst spells, the
best healing of all spells." (Ibid. XXI1L p. 44.) Another
general reference to spells : "Ahura Mazda answered, It is



SPELLS IN THE INDIVIDUAL MIND. 129

when a man pronouncing my spell, either reading or reciting
it by heart, draws the furrows and hides there himself."
(Ibid. XXIII. p. 50.) There are various other references
to the power of spells in the Zendavesta.

There are many illustrations of spell sentiments in the
Laws of Manu. Burnt oblations during the mother's
pregnancy, the ceremony after birth, the tonsure, and the
tying of the sacred girdle of munga grass, are all forms of
spells. (Sac. Books of the East, XXV. p. 34.) So also is
the naming of the child on a lucky lunar day, in a lucky
muhurta, under an auspicious constellation. (Ibid. XXV. p.
35.) Another form of spell is, "having taken a staff, having
worshipped the sun and walked round the fire turning his
right hand towards it." (Ibid. XXV. p. 38.) Again, " his
meal will procure long life if he eats facing the east, fame if
he eats facing the south, prosperity if he turns to the west,
truthfulness if he faces the north." The following are
charm forms : " Let a Brahman always sip water out of
the part of the hand sacred to Brahman, or out of that
sacred to Ka, or out of that sacred to the gods, never out
of that sacred to the manes." (Ibid. XXV. p. 40.) And
in "seated on Kusawith their points to the east, purified by
blades of grass, and sanctified by three suppressions of the
breath, he is worthy to pronounce the syllable Om." (Ibid.
XXV. p. 44.) The syllable Om itself is a spell, so is the
daily reading of the Veda according to rule, which, among
other charm-powers, will " ever cause sweet and sour milk,
clarified butter, and honey to flow." (Ibid. XXV. p. 49.)
All the early religious ordinances were spell forms. Thus
"an oblation duly thrown into the fire reaches the sun,
from the sun comes rain, from rain food." (XXV. p. 89.)
In this there is no expression of a personality. In the
following we have offerings to the early ghosts as well as
to impersonal*. "Let him throw Bali offerings in all
directions of the compass, proceeding from the east to the
south, saying adoration to the Maruts, adoration to the





130 THE EVOLUTION OP CHAEMS AND

waters, adoration to the trees. At the head of the bed he
shall offer to fortune (luck), at the foot to Bhadrakali, then
he is to throw up into the air a Bali for all the gods and
goblins ; all that remains is to be thrown to the cranes."
(XXV. p. 91 .) Diseases are the result of fetish evil, so the
stealer of a lamp will become blind, the stealer of clothes
will have white leprosy, a horse-stealer become lame, and
an informer will have a foul-smelling nose. (Ibid. XXV. p.
440.) Here is a spell that might be matched in any rustic
village. " A student who has broken his vow shall offer at
night, at a cross-way, to Nirriti a one-eyed ass." (Ibid.
;XXV.p.454.) In another he is to go begging to seven houses,
.dressed in the hide of a sacrificed ass. (XXV. p. 455.) Even
at that early period cross-ways were places for powerful
spells to be performed, and the fetish virtue is enhanced if
the material of the spell is obtained from many sources. As
a sample of the many modes by means of which fetish
pollutions may be removed, we quote the following: "By
muttering with a consecrated mind the Savitri three
thousand times, dwelling for a month in a cow-house, and
subsisting on milk, a man is freed from the guilt of accept-
ing presents from a wicked man." (Ibid. XXV. p. 470.)

We may note that sacred stones were common in Upper
Assyria and in India, but none are specified in the
Vendidad ; so, in like manner, animal totems are not
commonly referred to. The early division of the animal
world into pure and impure, clean and unclean, are indica-
tions of totemism. So the ten incarnations of Verethraghna
in the Bahrain Yast are totem incarnations.

We have seen that man, under the inspiration of the
doctrine of charms, had evolved and defined a vast series
of virtues, in things curative, protective, and prescient;
more, all that we know or conceive of the transcendental
had their origin in this stage. Nothing is more common in
the principle of charms than to transfer an attribute, a
power or principle, good or bad, through some form or



SPELLS IN THE INDIVIDUAL MIND. 131

virtue ; in stone, or leaf, or combination of objects, the pre-
sent state of the attribute is withdrawn, and it is cast
definitely on some other person, animal, or thing, or left,
in the chance medley of the earth's waste products to be
consciously or unconsciously appropriated by some other
object. Out of this capacity of transference was evolved
the doctrine of transformation if ono attribute could
be cast off and assumed by other than its original
possessor so could all attributes. Hence the doctrine
of transformation became a power, and all kinds of
charms had power to transform sun, moon and stars
into men or animals and birds, and other animals into other


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