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Finding the Perfect Travel Talisman

Why on earth would you consider a travel talisman or charm or amulet on your trip?

You'd be surprised how many women do! All kinds of women - even women for whom reason and logic are all-powerful.

For some of us, carrying a travel protection talisman, a travel amulet or some kind of good luck charm provides that extra little bit of comfort. It might even boost our courage a little...

What exactly is a travel talisman?

There are many different definitions of a talisman or an amulet but everyone agrees on their purpose: to keep you safe while you travel.

I confess: I used to carry a green tin cup (called Kermit) that never left my backpack. I convinced myself that Kermit kept me safe through wars, bus crashes, hunger and thirst - and even if Kermit wasn't solely responsible for my survival, I'm sure I wouldn't have fared as well without him.

According to some definitions, a talisman basically brings you good luck, as opposed to an amulet, which is designed to protect you from evil. Others use the word interchangeably.

Usually, a talisman is a small object worn somewhere on the body, most often in the form of jewelry.

Whatever the definition, I'll use it here as an object designed to attract positive thingsto you - such as good luck, interesting people, unexpected adventures - and to protect you from negative things (accidents, theft, illness) while you travel.

Travel talismans can come in many shapes or forms:

  • Rocks and stones which you may have found in a special place
  • Gems and crystals, especially those representing your birth month
  • Natural objects such as bird feathers, animal claws, shark teeth
  • Jewelry like necklaces, pendants, bracelets, rings
  • An animal or rabbit's foot, a custom that originated in Africa
  • Good luck objects: fuzzy dice, stuffed animals, pet snakes, and yes, even tin mugs!

A talisman's power is said to increase with intention. If someone who cares deeply about you gives it to you, its power is stronger. The same goes for your intention, it would appear - choose it with concentration and thought and it will be that much stronger.

You can be involved in preparing your own travel talisman - like many, you could draw an appropriate symbol and carry it with you when you travel. Many symbols are based on age-old symbols that represent a variety of concepts and beliefs.

Here are some of the most popular:

  • Ankh: ancient Egyptian talisman
  • Circle: the symbol of feminine spirit or force
  • Celtic cross: a mixture of celtic belief and ancient Catholicism
  • Dove: the universal symbol of peace
  • Dragon: scary in Europe, but powerful in Asia
  • Fish: used to symbolize Christianity
  • Four-leaf clover: the luck of the Irish
  • Horn: in many cultures against the Evil Eye
  • Labyrinth: the feminine, as in fertility
  • Phoenix: the symbol of rebirth
  • Scarab: protection against evil in the Egypt of Pharaohs
  • Tao: the ancient Chinese symbol of wholeness
  • Zodiac: a popular travel choice based on your sign

Many talismans are religious in origin, like the St Christopher medal that was once almost compulsory for any Catholic traveler (St Christopher was subsequently de-canonized by the Catholic church in the 1960s).

In Islam, items with a quotation from the Qur'an, or Muslim holy book, may be used as talismans to ward off evil or as a charm to preserve health.

In Judaism, the Star of David is an extremely powerful talisman.

Whatever your beliefs, there's a travel talisman out there for you. You can buy it, make it, or receive it as a gift. It doesn't matter.

What does matter is - that you believe in it!