The Hamsa hand has been used for many generations to ward off negative energies. People from a variety of backgrounds believe that the Hamsa hand draws in positive energies which thwart the evil eye (the stare believed to cause damage or bad luck for the individual at whom it is directed). In Arabic, Hamsa means “five,” which is representative of the five fingers found on the amulet. In addition to jewelry pieces, the Hamsa hand symbol can be found on items such as key chains, pendants and home furnishings.
Members of the Jewish community believe that the Hamsa hand aids in the eradication of evil spirits, thus providing the wearer with luck and protection. In Hebrew, the sign is frequently referenced as “Hamesh hand” or “the hand of Mirima.” Miriam’s hand is linked with the biblical Miriam, who was the sister of Aaron and Moses and a strong female character in the Torah. Miriam’s part in the escape of the Israelites from Egypt was significant as she revealed a miraculous source of water at the Sinai desert. Finally, as per the Kabbalah, the five fingers are representative of the five books of the Torah. The Hebrew’s fifth letter (Heh) is also a symbol of the holy names of God.
Wearing Hamsa jewelry pieces and accessories is believed to protect people from the evil eye. Accessories are typically comprised of other customary motifs that are thought to provide the wearer with blessing and security, including Ben Porat Yoseph, which comes from the book of Genesis.
The 72 Names of God is another common motif in Hamsa jewelry, inspired by the teachings of the Kabbalah. These are three-letter sequences in Hebrew, believed to encourage helpful life changes. Hamsa jewelry pieces can also be ornamented with gemstones that draw on positive energies and add even more beauty to already attractive pieces.