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According to Wikipedia, "The evil eye is is a superstitious belief in curse, believed to be cast by a malevolent glare, usually given to a person when one is unaware." In reality, evil eye is much more than this.
So, in order to understand the origins and history of the evil eye, one must first understand the distinction between the amulet and the evil eye.
An ocular amulet is actually the charm meant to ward off the evil eye. It is made up of handmade glass featuring concentric circles or teardrop shapes in dark blue, white, light blue and black, occasionally with a yellow/gold edge. This,is in literally terms means “an eye for an eye".
Now, the concept of evil eye arises from the belief which says that when someone achieves great success or recognition, they also attract envy of those around them. This envy later on manifests itself as a curse which undo all the good fortune.
The concept of evil eye was well explained by Heliodorus of Emesa in the ancient Greek romance, Aethiopica. In this, Heliodorus of Emesa writes, "When any one looks at what is excellent with an envious eye he fills the surrounding atmosphere with a pernicious quality, and transmits his own envenomed exhalations into whatever is nearest to him."
Interestingly, the belief in the evil eye dates back to Greek Classical antiquity, i.e. to at least the 6th century B.C., when it appeared on drinking vessels. And, from here the concept of evil eye spread across the world and became most prominent in the Mediterranean and West Asia. In fact, India has its own powerful history of the evil eye, or what Northern India commonly refer to as "nazar."
Now, in the twenty-first century, people (majorly youth) wear amulets to either ward of the evil eye or show-off their aesthetic fashion. In the latter case, amulets in the form of necklaces, anklets, bracelets, earrings, and even clothing are worn by people.
Another common method to ward off the evil eye in Hinduism and Islam is to take handful of red chillies in one hand and circle the person's head a few times, and then burning the chillies. Well, this practice is usually common in India.
So, now you know what the evil eye is and how you could protect yourself from it; either wear an amulet or do the red chillies sorcery. Lastly, I call upon Chashm-e-Badoor (meaning, “far be the evil eye") for you and your dear ones!
Keywords: Evil Eye, India, Sorcery, Amulet, Superstition, World, Fashion.