Origins of the Evil Eye

Throughout the ages, lyrics have been penned and paeans have been sung for beautiful eyes. But, the Turks believe that these very beautiful eyes become the harbingers of misfortune and doom when they turn towards you with greed and envy.

This belief rests not only in Turkey, but also among the people of the Mediterranean countries as well as in the Indian sub-continent. Legend has that that this belief had its genesis amongst the ancient Egyptians and Sumerians.

The Evil Eye belief says that when someone eyes your good fortune with jealousy or gluttony, bad luck in some form is bound to befall you. It is also widely held that any accolade or praise, however well meaning it may be, is always tinged with a wee bit of greed and spite.

It is these greedy and spiteful looks, which are directed towards you consciously or unconsciously, that have the power to cause you harm. Therefore, they are to be wary of.

The Turkish people believe that there are basically three kinds of evil looks: the first is the unconscious evil eye, which causes harm unintentionally. The second kind of evil eye causes harm with intent and deliberation, while the third kind of evil eye, which is believed to be the most potent kind, is the invisible eye.

The belief in the ability of desirous eyes to cause harm is omnipresent in the Turkish social strata and even extends its sway on people with colored eyes. The Turks believe that people with eyes in an unusual color are wicked, do not desire the good of others and hence seek their harm and misery.

The Turks are especially circumspect of people with blue eyes. They believe that blue-eyed people, however enchanting and attractive their eyes may look, essentially harbor negative feelings about others and when this negative energy gets transmitted to others, much harm and distress is caused.

The belief in the Evil Eye may have originated with the Oriental people, but this belief in some form or the other is present in every culture of the world. Thus you yourself, on countless occasions, became cautious when you didn't like the look in the other person's eyes.

You do this all the time, without probably being aware of the Turkish Evil Eye belief. We always talk of cold eyes, mean eyes and cruel eyes. The look in someone's eyes is a reflection of his thoughts and it is only man's natural self-preservation instinct, which tells him to be on guard when the person in front doesn't seem right.