Who am 'eye'?

Have you ever pondered whether you could discern the distinction between wearing an authentically ancient bead and a modern factory-made counterpart? Would it make a significant difference to your experience? I surmise it would... Otherwise, you wouldn't be engrossed in these lines, drawn into the intriguing world of ancient bead artistry.
Beads: The World's Primordial Art Form
Beads hold the honor of being the world's most primordial art form. Their story intertwines with the very roots of human civilization, tracing a lineage that stretches back to the dawning of human consciousness. Our distant ancestors, even before they felt the urge to illustrate their experiences on the walls of caves, adorned themselves with stone beads. These early humans, including our Neanderthal cousins, utilized beads not just as decorative elements, but for ceremonial purposes in burial rites, hinting at a deeper significance that transcends mere aesthetic appeal.

Ancient Beads: More than Adornment
For the individual who has realized that it potentially dwells in a boundless ocean of possibilities, unshackled by the rigid constraints of conventional belief systems, an ancient bead can serve as more than just an artifact. It can become an invaluable instrument for focus, introspection, and exploration of the inner self. The tactile and visual experience of these beads can bridge the chasm of millennia, forging a connection with the emotions, beliefs, and lives of our ancient ancestors.

Invitation to a Personal Experience
I invite you to immerse yourself in the enchanting world of these ancient artifacts. Take a moment to admire these vibrant red Yantra Pentagram Star Beads. Engage with them visually, let your mind wander across their surfaces, tracing the contours and grooves shaped by long-forgotten hands. Feel their weight, their texture, their energy. Allow yourself to be drawn into their story, to feel the echoes of ancient cultures, and perhaps, to discover something new about yourself in the process.

Magic Tantric pentagon shaped Star Beads

Beads as Catalysts for Meditation
healthy mind, when mindful and crystal-clear, radiates coherence akin to laser light. It's within this mental clarity that we can decode the intricate patterns of existence, the interference structures inherent in human life, which might otherwise seem like a random array of chaos.

For a consciousness intent on cultivating a heightened sense of wakefulness, an ancient bead can not only possess, but also accumulate, 'amuletic' power.
This power is, of course, a placebo, but even then, as we shall see, it will work.

The Ancient Bead: A Rechargeable Talisman for the Modern Age
In the grasp of a focused mind, an ancient bead can transform into a
meta-modern talisman, rechargeable much like a battery. In this role, it offers the bearer a profound connection to their own roots and reality. This ancient bead, thus, becomes a magic mirror reflecting the bearer's unique energy, emerging as the ultimate symbol of personal power. Contrary to the need for a string of 108 beads in a Buddhist prayer mala, just a single bead is sufficient in this context.

The Bead: A Timeless Signature
A bead serves as an ancient signature, an assurance that despite the overwhelming tide of big data and the impending singularity, your unique identity endures. You are not a mere simulacrum; you are an individual, distinctive and authentic.

Reconnecting with Your Past
The etymology of the word 'religion' traces back to the Latin term 'religare', which signifies re-connection or re-tying to one's past. The clarity offered by a coherent consciousness can open a channel to archetypal dreams, perhaps even those inherited from great civilizations long forgotten. Through this channel, these dreams can be acknowledged, 'awared', and integrated into your present consciousness, thus forming a link between past, present, and future.


The Symbolic Brain & The Bead: A Dialogue Across Millennia

Our brains house dormant operating systems, layered constructs of archaic biological survival mechanisms that operate beyond the realm of language. These hidden survival systems navigate the world through feelings, instincts, intuition, symbolic comprehension, and analog thinking.
Meditative concentration on a bead can act as a doorway to these ancient parts of our biological heritage. It rekindles a connection with our deep historical and biological past - a past that stretches back further than the first time a prehistoric human adorned themselves with a bead. This practice can be perceived as a form of spiritual archaeology.
This is why holding an ancient bead can evoke profound feelings of abstract symbolic recognition. The textures, the weight, the silent history resonating from the bead communicate with these ancient, language-less parts of our brain.
The Authentic Talisman: A Bridge to the Archaic Self
In this context, the ancient bead assumes a magical quality. It serves as a symbolic link, a bridge between your conscious self and the archaic, instinctual systems otherwise inaccessible to your control. These ancient components of your identity, deeply embedded within your mind, are oblivious to reason or verbal language. Here, the bead becomes your language, your means of communication with these archaic systems. It begins to communicate to you, to resonate within you as your authentic talisman, connecting you with the ancient past and the primordial aspects of your own self.


Mystery bead from Afghanistan - SOLD TO FAHAD A.

Don't be mistaken into thinking that your entire being is governed solely by logic and reason. Even if you are an atheist, adhering strictly to the principles of positivist science, there are aspects of your psyche that are much older, far more primitive, that will not heed to your logical arguments.

These ancient constituents of your brain are akin to a million-year-old software, programmed for survival in a world vastly different from the one we inhabit today. They are like the genetic equivalent of an outdated computer program, stubborn and resistant to contemporary updates.

This is why many of our well-intentioned plans, particularly those related to lifestyle changes and weight loss, often meet with failure. Our genes, ingrained with survival instincts from a time when food was scarce and physical exertion a daily necessity, are not easily aligned with a modern world of abundance and sedentary lifestyles.

Take, for instance, the  reused genetics from the roundworm living within you as a part of you. It is influencing your eating patterns. This primitive creature is not governed by reason or the conscious desire for health and well-being. It's driven by an ancient, unyielding biological directive to eat and survive.

"Our unique attributes evolved over a period of roughly 6 million years. They represent modifications of great ape attributes that are roughly 10 million years old, primate attributes that are roughly 55 million years old, mammalian attributes that are roughly 245 million years old, vertebrate attributes that are roughly 600 million years old, and attributes of nucleated cells that are perhaps 1,500 million years old.
If you think it is unnecessary to go that far back in the tree of life to understand our own attributes, consider the humbling fact that we share with nematodes [roundworms] the same gene that controls appetite. At most, our unique attributes are like an addition onto a vast multiroom mansion. It is sheer hubris to think that we can ignore all but the newest room."
(David Sloan Wilson, Evolution for Everyone, 2007)

The stark contrast between our modern rational selves and the ancient instinctual elements within us underscores the elaborate, multi-layered nature of our existence - a vivid testament to the complexities of evolution. Grasping and maneuvering this internal dichotomy forms part of the captivating challenge of the human experience. In this respect, the pursuit of authenticity is tantamount to the quest for a progressively deeper equilibrium between the conflicting biological systems within us. We are, in a sense, engaged in an evolutionary struggle with our own selves, where genuine individuality is equivalent to an authentic balance point between systems separated by millions of years.


24 * 10 mm
Translucent eye bead
An ancient signature from the
cradle of civilization

A Vision of Symbiosis: The Modern Human and the Inner Caveman

Herein lies my vision, glimpsed through the symbolic lens of an ancient bead: a modern, rational human in tune with their inner caveman.

Scientific studies have illustrated an interesting dichotomy: religious individuals tend to demonstrate higher empathy, but lower analytical skills compared to those who are scientifically-minded. The latter, while more analytical, lean towards a less empathetic, more psychopathic profile.

However, based on my own experiences, I believe that we are now in an era where this divide between the 'feeling' systems of our archaic brain and the 'language and rational thinking' systems of our evolved cognition can be bridged.

Super Wakefulness
This reconciliation occurs in a state of enhanced consciousness, or super wakefulness, where the most advanced regions of your brain, the frontal lobes, orchestrate your life. From this state, the importance of achieving synchronicity between the various operative systems within your brain, some as ancient as our caveman ancestors, becomes evident. If these components are not in harmony, you find yourself at war with your own nature.
Placebo You: The Power of Meditation with a Bead
The practice of meditating with a bead in your hand is an act of placebo. Emerging scientific research has unveiled the remarkable influence of the placebo effect. Studies from institutions like MIT have even shown that the placebo effect is more potent when associated with a brand name.
Applying this to ancient beads, one could argue that these artifacts, steeped in history and symbolic value, could enhance the placebo effect. However, it's worth noting that the motives behind promoting this practice extend beyond mere financial gain.

Under the scrutiny of super awareness, a profound realization emerges: You are the placebo.

In this state of heightened consciousness, you can choose to engage in symbolic thinking, leveraging different regions of your brain to access your emotions, immune system, and other facets of your being. This meta-awareness allows you to self-regulate and harmonize the diverse cognitive systems within you, thereby fostering a more balanced, integrated self.



The Dawn of Meta-Modern Bead Magic
In a post-
or rather meta-modern context, the ancient bead emerges as a talisman or an amulet with renewed significance. It serves as a bulwark against the disconcerting unreality spawned by our increasingly digital society, grounding us in an unbroken lineage of human history.
Intimate Sensing
An ancient bead demands a tactile relationship. It should be cradled by your skin, cherished by your touch. You, as a living, breathing, perspiring entity, should form a direct connection with it.
As a meditation technique you can 'aware' the subtle sensation of the bead's presure on your skin as often as possible. We tend to forget what is konstant. Meditation is to remind ourselves about what is always there. Ideally, let it nestle close to your heart. This direct interaction transforms both parties: your touch alters the bead's surface over time, while the bead subtly reshapes your inner essence. Consider the bead below in this context - observe it, feel it, sense it.

Yet, this interaction extends beyond mere touch. Vision plays a crucial role too. As you gaze at the bead below, you may feel as though it's gazing back at you. If you can sense this reciprocal observation, you are shielded by the ancient Eye - an emblem of protection, wisdom, and omnipresence. This interaction unveils a novel dimension of bead magic, one that not only transcends time but also bridges the gap between the physical and the spiritual.


Hexagon - 18 * 13 mm
This super ancient bead has been shaped,
not only by its makers,
but also by thousand of years of time
and by contact with human skin.

Even as civilizations advanced, pre-agricultural, shamanistic interpretations of 'reality' have held their ground, particularly in the East. Not only has magical thinking survived the evolution into more modern societal structures, but it has also flourished and morphed into novel forms.

The Resilience of Conscious Belief in Ancient Wisdom
This evolution is profoundly evident within the tantric systems of India, prevalent in both Buddhism and Hinduism. Here, mystical traditions and metaphysical principles are fused seamlessly with everyday life, transcending the realm of the purely spiritual.

The Intersection of Science and Symbolism
It's crucial to recall that not too far in the past, even our Western scientific rationality was framed within a context of magic. Ancient Greek science, for instance, was heavily steeped in symbolic and analog thinking. The segregation of symbolic thinking from scientific reasoning only truly occurred during the Age of Enlightenment in the 18th Century.

There's no disputing that this collective shift to a belief in 'facts' has emancipated the Western mind from certain mental constraints - we no longer fear what we understand. However, progress is invariably a dialectic process: while we gain certain aspects, others are inevitably lost. The capacity to perceive the world as a magical place is, in itself, a remarkable gift.

In countries like India, the stark demarcation between reason and magic never truly materialized. It's not uncommon to encounter highly educated Indian scientists who harbor beliefs in astrology and reincarnation. Even in the ultra-modern Cyber City in Gurgaon, outside New Delhi, the young, tech-savvy denizens often exhibit a fascinating blend of magical and rational thought. This amalgamation underscores the enduring power of conscious belief in ancient wisdom, even in a rapidly modernizing world.

The Renaissance of Magic Thinking
As consistently maintained on Ancientbead.com, I truly believe we're on the precipice of a 'renaissance' of magical-symbolic thinking. This resurgence, however, must take place in an entirely novel context. A meta-modern perspective enables us to believe in the power of the placebo, while simultaneously acknowledging it as such. This 'quantum position' allows us to transcend traditional 'binary' thinking.


Tantric-Pythagorean sacred geometry
used for spiritual rituals and Meditation


In this light, I interpret the polygon-shaped beads displayed below through the lens of animistic magical thought, but with a contemporary perspective that permits me to appreciate the enriched reality of 'superposed states' of belief and disbelief co-existing.

In this context, I wholeheartedly recommend Sting's recent song, "I Can't Stop Thinking About You". The insightful lyrics, to my ears, echo this same enlightened path of spiritual navigation, transcending the dated dualistic divisions of reality into 'either-or' scenarios.

The Symbolic Potency of the Pentagram
Beads have been imbued with various mystical properties since antiquity. This has been accomplished through their distinct geometric shapes, patterns, and the materials themselves. Among these, I find pentagon-shaped beads particularly intriguing.
The pentagram has been utilized in spiritual practices across myriad cultures since the dawn of civilization. The earliest known use of the pentagram dates back to 3500 B.C. at Ur in Mesopotamia. However, it also features prominently in ancient European Celtic culture. The temporal and geographic separation of these cultures suggests that the adoption of identical symbols cannot be solely attributed to cultural exchange. Rather, it may also be explained by the presence of archetypal behavior and patterns of understanding residing within human subconsciousness. In this context, I highly recommend delving into the writings of C.G. Jung, which serve as enlightening gateways to new 'realities' from which especially scarred ancient beads can be appreciated.



RB 5 - Average size  8 to 9 mm
Click on picture for larger image

Gorgeous beautiful Ancient polygonal Yantra beads in blood red jasper of the highest quality!

Most of these beads are shaped as pentagons depicting stars.

Period: From the times of the Buddha up to around 200 A.D.

NOTE - The beads are slightly more brownish than the scan shows.
In fact, they corectly match the color of blood.


The captivating brownish blood-red pentagram jasper beads displayed above hail from India, dating back over 2000 years. It is highly plausible that they were utilized in a Buddhist or Hindu tantric context.

The Tantric-Greek Synthesis
I posit that the tantric comprehension of divine geometries blossomed in Northwest India, as a melding of ancient Indian animistic ideologies with the 'modern' Seleucid Greek geometric and mathematical knowledge.

Indeed, Indian tantric texts make reference to the 'Yavanacharya', signifying a Greek teacher. Cultural exchanges and influence are by no means recent phenomena. Pythagoras (586-506 B.C.), revered for his mathematical and philosophical wisdom, extensively traversed the known world. On his journeys, he disseminated his knowledge, while also drawing inspiration from exchanges with like-minded intellects.

While it is improbable that Pythagoras himself visited India, the fusion of Greek and Indian philosophies likely occurred during and after the reign of Alexander the Great. This synthesis  began with the emergence of the Seleucid Empire and its amicable relations with the Mauryan Empire and later, Ashoka's Buddhist India. Later, it reached reached a zenith with the Bactrian Kingdom and the Indo-greek Kingdom further East.
For centuries, both Buddhism and Tantrism in Northwest India were profoundly shaped by Greek intellectual traditions. Even today, one can find remnants of Yavana, or Greek medicine, practiced in Punjab. This crucial historical connection has largely been overshadowed, primarily due to the partition of Greater India into India and Pakistan. The Muslim-majority Pakistan chose to downplay its Buddhist history, while India emerged as the officially designated homeland of Hindus. What is now known through scant fragments of Greek-Buddhist history in the form of Gandhara art was, in actuality, a sprawling and advanced Indo-Greek Buddhist culture that spanned from Syria to India for over 800 years!


The essence of fivefold symmetry is most fundamentally exhibited in the geometric figures of the regular Pentagon and the five-pointed star. These two figures stand as symbolic representations of the harmonious interplay between the celestial and the terrestrial, the ethereal and the tangible.

In the philosophical lineage of Pythagoras, the 'pentagram five' was revered as hieros gamos, a sacred marriage that metaphorically unites the heavens with the earth. The pentagram, derived from straightforward geometric observations, was intrinsically associated with the celestial body of a star.

The geometric manifestation of a star, in this context, was perceived not merely as a mathematical or scientific concept, but rather, it was imbued with symbolic meaning. It was considered a conduit that channeled the ethereal and transcendent qualities of heavenly stars, making these qualities tangible on earth through the rituals involving pentagrams.

Therefore, the geometrical star served as a symbolic emissary, a celestial ambassador if you will, that brought the intangible qualities of the heavenly stars into the tangible realm of the earth. The rituals involving the pentagram, then, were not mere ceremonies. They were symbolic acts of communion, acts of drawing down the divine into the domain of the human, a process of transforming the abstract into the concrete through the power of symbolism and belief.


A star 'caught' within a pentagon


The Star-catcher
The early Hindu and Buddhist Tantric writings seem to share Pythagoras' view of the star and its symbology.
The ancient Indian Tantrics also saw the Pentagram as a 'star-catcher,' as a way to 'bring down' a Star in Heaven to unify it with Mother Earth.
The Pentagon within the Star within the Pentagon within the star
Furthermore, these two geometric forms seem to interact with each other in most beautiful and infinite ways. The Pentagon and the five-pointed star, viewed as objects in the 2-dimensional Euclidian plane, have ten-symmetry operations (five rotations and five reflections). Both these objects are related; each Pentagon contains a star, and each star contains a Pentagon. As illustrated below the central area of the star has the shape of the Pentagon which again contains a star.

The Star-catcher and the infinite Interplay
The perception of the star and its symbology seem to transcend cultural boundaries, as evidenced by the parallels found in early Hindu and Buddhist Tantric writings. These ancient Indian Tantric traditions also viewed the Pentagram as a 'star-catcher'. For them, the Pentagram served as a symbolic tool to 'catch' or 'bring down' a Star from Heaven, fostering a spiritual unification with Mother Earth.

This belief is a testament to the universal human aspiration to bridge the gap between the celestial and the terrestrial, between the abstract divine and the concrete human experience.

The infinite Dance of the Pentagon and the Star
The beauty of these geometric forms lies not just in their individual shapes, but in the way they interact and intermingle with each other. The Pentagon and the five-pointed star, when observed as objects in the 2-dimensional Euclidean plane, display a tenfold symmetry operation. This includes five rotations and five reflections, representing a rhythmic dance of symmetry between these two geometric forms.

What's more intriguing is the intrinsic relationship between these two objects; within each Pentagon resides a star, and conversely, within each star, a Pentagon is found. It's as if these two forms are perpetually nested within each other in an infinite loop, creating an endless interplay of geometric symbolism. The central area of the star mimics the shape of the Pentagon, which in turn contains another star, thereby repeating the cycle.

As above, so below
This dynamic interplay between the Pentagon and the star symbolically encapsulates the perpetual cycle of the cosmos, the ceaseless dance of creation and destruction, and the infinite interplay of the divine and the earthly realms. It's a beautiful metaphor of the fractal nature of the universe where each part reflects the whole, an echo of the age-old hermetic axiom, "As above, so below".



That which is above is as that which is below
That which is below is as that which is above

The infinite play between heaven and earth.
What is above repeats itself below and vise verse.

The occult interpretation of this mathematical proportion (the pentagram) is sometimes expressed in the maxim: ‘Nature is to man as man is to God.’ The proportion itself is often called the Golden Section of Pythagoras, and is associated with the Hermetic axiom: ‘That which is above is as that which is below, and that which is below is as that which is above.’  Paul Foster Case

In this sense, the Pythagoreans viewed the pentagram as a geometric
representation of a dynamic cyclic transformation allowing the
'logos,' the spirit to ascend into the human body.



In this section, I aim to spotlight the pentagram within an array of contexts - from imaginative mathematical mysticism to various religious interpretations, and simple analog symbolic thinking. What you'll find is just a fragment of the myriad examples accessible to those who seek. How you interpret and utilize this information is entirely your prerogative. I am here merely to present this intriguing material, to inspire and foster exploration in a new reality of psychological sampling within a cross-cultural open-source environment.
The golden proportion
The geometric dimensions of a pentagram align perfectly with the Golden Ratio - a mathematical principle that has fascinated artists and mathematicians since ancient times. It's found in diverse works of art worldwide and is still considered aesthetically pleasing to the eye. The Golden Ratio is a direct offshoot of the Fibonacci sequence.

The Fibonacci sequence
The Fibonacci sequence, characterized by five-fold symmetry, is a signature of nature. Known as Nature's numbering system, Fibonacci numbers pop up almost everywhere - from the configuration of a single cell, the design of a flower, the structure of a grain of wheat, to the proportional sections in a human finger.

The five Elements
In Western tradition, dating back to the days of the Greek philosopher Empedocles, the universe was believed to be composed of four elements: earth, air, fire, and water. However, in the ancient Indian tradition, these four were seen as part of the material realm, all governed by a quintessential fifth element: the Spirit. From the Indian perspective, the Spirit was the foremost element, with earth being the fifth and final element.

The Five Senses
Humans are endowed with five senses: sight, hearing, taste, smell, and touch. Within this context, the pentagram can be seen as a symbol of the five sense portals. When connecting with ancient beads, I recommend engaging all five senses. It's even possible to taste a bead - a direct, intimate connection with a piece of history!

The Christian Pentagram
The pentagram, known for its usage by Germanic and Celtic tribes before the spread of Christianity, initially found a place in early Christian symbolism, representing the five wounds of Christ on the Cross. However, as Christianity institutionalized, the cross became the dominant symbol. The pentagram's association with various 'pagan' practices likely posed a challenge to the Church's attempts to monopolize its use within a Christian context.

The Pentagram in modern Symbolism
Over time, the Christian usage of the pentagram not only diminished but also gained a somewhat demonized reputation. This unfortunate trajectory mirrors that of the ancient swastika - both beautiful symbols that were appropriated by inappropriate institutions for misguided purposes. It is time to reclaim these symbols, restoring their original significance.

In this process of reclamation, it's also important to respect certain pagan perspectives that honor our human-animal nature and our 'dark' sides. The occult thinking of Aleister Crowley deserves a mention here.

By inviting a rethinking of the pentagram, I aim to advocate for its use in an open meta-modern context. If individuals feel compelled to reconnect with their animal nature through darker rituals, challenging perhaps the oversimplified dichotomy of light versus darkness in some interpretations of Christianity, I'd recommend exploring the works of C.G. Jung as a source of inspiration. His understanding of the human psyche could provide a much-needed balance and depth to these explorations.

The Five Pillars of Islam
In Islam, the number five holds a prominent position. Followers of the faith pray five times a day, aligning their lives with the rhythm of these daily rituals. Furthermore, the core beliefs and practices of Islam, known as the Five Pillars, are:

The declaration of faith that "There is no god but God, and Muhammad is the Messenger of God".

The practice of performing ritual prayers in the proper way five times each day.

The requirement to give alms, or charitable donations, to assist those in need.

Observing the fast from dawn to sunset during the holy month of Ramadan.

Making the pilgrimage to the holy city of Mecca at least once in a lifetime, if it is within the person's means.

The Hamsa's protective high Five
The fascination with the number five extends beyond religious practices and is often connected to more tangible, everyday realities. For instance, consider the human hand, with its five fingers, which has been a potent symbol across cultures and eras.


Hand of Fatimah or Hamsa

One such symbol is the Hamsa, a palm-shaped amulet popular throughout the Middle East and North Africa. Often depicted with an eye in the center of the palm, the Hamsa is believed to provide defense against the evil eye and bring its owner happiness, luck, health, and good fortune.

Just as the five fingers of a hand work together to perform tasks, these various cultural and religious representations of the number five all contribute to a greater understanding of the world and our place within it. As such, they can serve as a source of unity, bridging gaps between different cultures and faiths.

Indeed, the Hamsa amulet, also known as the Hand of Fatima in Islamic traditions or the Hand of Miriam in Jewish ones, is a powerful symbol whose roots extend deep into history. It's a prime example of how the number five and the imagery of a hand have transcended cultural and religious boundaries, becoming a universally recognized symbol of protection, power, and blessing.

The Hamsa, which does indeed mean 'five' in Arabic, is typically depicted as a symmetrical hand with three fingers pointed straight out and the thumb and pinkie finger curved slightly outward. Often, an eye is depicted in the center of the palm, signifying the watchful gaze that wards off the evil eye or ill intentions.

Historically, the Hamsa is believed to have originated in the ancient civilizations of the Middle East, possibly the Phoenicians or the Egyptians, and it was subsequently adopted by many other cultures. In Buddhism and Hinduism, the mudras, which are symbolic hand gestures, also hold significant meaning and are used in meditation and yoga.

It's fascinating to observe the legacy of the Hamsa, or the protective hand, all the way from the ancient Indus Valley Civilization, through Buddhism and Hinduism, to its widespread use in contemporary Middle Eastern cultures. It serves as a testament to the universal human desire for protection, blessing, and the warding off of harm.


Blessing hand of late Indus Goddess

Blessing hand of Indus Goddess

Ghandaran schist Buddha

Jesus with blessing hand/mudra
Hagia Sofia mosaic

The pentagram, a five-pointed star interwoven with mathematical and geometric properties related to the Golden Ratio, symbolizes a profound interconnectedness deeply rooted in spiritual symbolism. Originating from ancient Buddhist and Hindu practices, it was an influential talisman, offering protection and serving as a bridge between the spiritual and the physical realms.
The five points of the pentagram represent the spirit and the four elements—earth, air, fire, and water. Thus, it signifies the unity of the spiritual and physical realms, encapsulating the divine within the material world.

In essence, the pentagram symbolizes the divine 'Logos' manifested within the human form, embodying the potential for spiritual transformation and our ability to manifest spiritual essence in the material world. It stands as a powerful symbol of our inherent divinity and our capacity to intertwine the spiritual 'star' within our everyday 'earthly' reality. The pentagram is indeed a testament to the power of spiritual symbolism fused with mathematical and geometric elegance.



A powerful Tantra Mala with 108 magic pentagon beads
Made by Mads Kornerup - Shamballajewels.com

One of my favorite Malas.
I call it

                  The (w)hole in the Eye - The Zero and the Soul

The eye you see is not
an eye because you see it.
It is an eye because it sees you.
Antonio Machado

The concept of the 'eye' as a symbol of protection and spiritual vision is a deeply ingrained aspect of human spiritual history. This notion has its roots in the shamanistic and animist traditions that preceded established world religions. Shamanism and animism attributed spiritual significance to natural elements, including animals, plants, and even geographical features. Within these traditions, the eye often symbolized perception beyond the physical realm and offered protection from negative forces.

The 'eye' has been notably represented as the 'Third Eye' in Hinduism and Buddhism. In these contexts, it represents a state of enlightenment, a gateway to higher consciousness, and spiritual insight. The Third Eye is said to 'see' beyond the physical and into the spiritual realm, granting the ability to perceive truths that transcend ordinary perception.

Theravada Buddhism and the unique blend of Vajrayana Buddhism and Bön in Tibet still uphold these ancient animist and shamanistic notions of the spiritual eye. This spiritual eye continues to symbolize a heightened state of awareness and a protective force against negative energies.

Interestingly, the symbolism of the eye extends far beyond these religions and can be found across different cultures worldwide. Beads crafted to resemble eyes, symbolizing protection, spiritual vision, and wisdom, have been discovered in archaeological sites dating back to the Neolithic period. This widespread and enduring symbolism reflects a shared human fascination with perception, protection, and the potential for transcendence.

The significance of ancient beads, both in modern times and millennia ago, is deeply rooted in the animistic context of their creation and usage. A fascinating interpretation can be seen in the hole that's present in these beads. In this perspective, the bead hole can be viewed symbolically as a "Magic Eye."

The bead as zero


At first glance, this analogy between a bead hole and an eye might appear far-fetched. However, when we delve into the past, we find that much of ancient reasoning and search for higher meaning were not grounded in evidence-based logic but rather in the persuasive power of symbolic and analog thinking. In fact, I'd venture even further into the realm of analog thinking and propose the following:

The hole can be considered as the first conceptualization of emptiness in world history - it symbolizes shoonyo, the zero. It can be said that consciousness itself is the absolute zero, the fundamental emptiness.

Is where the Real Fun starts.
There's too much counting
Everywhere else!

This perspective gains particular significance when we consider that it was the Indians who introduced the concept of zero. The term for zero in Hindi is "shoonya," which is an old Buddhist term for the fundamental emptiness of existence. The bead, with its hollow center, serves as a physical representation of this profound concept, embodying the idea of emptiness or void at the heart of existence.


Neolithic bead from North Africa

Interestingly, it appears that the oldest beads, characterized by their large, pecked holes and flat disk shapes, bear the closest resemblance to the human eye. This is clearly exemplified in the Neolithic bead displayed above.

In the Indus Valley culture, there is ample evidence of the use of the symbolic eye. In the Indus bead displayed below one can clearly observe the circular etching, that in the most simple symbolic form shows an Eye.

13 * 12 * 3,5 mm
 Magic Indus Valley Eye Bead -
1500 BC

You can see the same
bead displayed on this link


                             How to story tell a bead

Invoking the essence of storytelling, let's embark on a journey with the meta-modern mind, aiming to elicit those serene gamma waves in the frontal lobes:

Often, ancient beads have lain dormant within the bosom of Mother Earth for centuries. They haven't always been in the constant presence of human touch or gaze. But a profound transformation occurs when they are finally discovered and held. When your gaze meets the bead, it awakens from its long slumber, and a silent dialogue ensues.

To quote Nietzsche, with a slight modification to suit our context:

 "When you gaze long into the bead, the bead also gazes into you."

This statement encapsulates the profound exchange that occurs. It's not merely a physical observation of an object, but an interaction that connects you with the history, culture, and spirituality that the bead embodies. In this silent exchange, the bead is not just an inert artifact but becomes a living testament to the past, and you become a part of its ongoing story.

This bead is original   

  You become original

Here's a 'meta modernized' narrative that you can tailor to your unique perspective. In India, beads often go by the name Baba Ghoria, or "Holy Man's Bead." Typically, such beads were adorned by spiritual leaders or used for sacred purposes, such as relics in burial caskets or in Buddhist stupas.

Megasthenes, a Greek historian who resided at the court of Chandragupta Maurya, recorded that, in his experience, Indians were among the kindest, most honest, and most helpful people he had encountered. It's crucial to remember that the expansive region of India was once a peaceful, non-violent Buddhist empire. Prior to that, it was the homeland of the Indus Valley civilization, known as the only ancient culture that resolved social conflicts through means other than violence, evident in their toy-like weaponry. The spiritual teachings of Mahavir and the Jains attest to this ancient culture's enduring legacy. Perhaps... just perhaps... the peaceful vibrations of these golden eras have imbued the ancient bead you behold with their energy, as pious Jains, Buddhists, and Hindus kept these amulets in close contact with their skin, close to their hearts. We can align ourselves with the positive intentions and deeds of the past by choosing to perceive this connection.

The ancient bead, in this sense, has been instilled with the energy of noble intentions and compassionate hearts for many generations. And perhaps... just maybe... it has come into contact with an enlightened being. This narrative, if you choose to embrace it as part of your personal reality, has the power to positively impact your well-being, even as far as affecting your blood pressure.

Meta Modern Bead Magic & Poetic Quantum Physics
Here is one of my favorite beads. A wonderful Buddhist prayer bead with a natural crystalline eye. This Eye Bead is one out of a million!
When you stare at this eye it will stare back at you ... And seen by this old eye you become the original.
It takes an eye to know an eye - an original for an original.


28 * 19 mm
Click on picture for close up of eye
The allure of this bead is so potent that it harmonizes perfectly with my intentional and self-fashioned belief in its power. In this moment, I wouldn't trade it even for the much sought-after nine-eyed Zee-bead! (Of course, from a purely aesthetic point of view, I wouldn't, but considering the significant difference in their monetary value, I might reconsider.)

This concept, I believe, encapsulates what I refer to as Meta-Modern Magic. Meta-modern magic incorporates a conscious meta-level of understanding, recognizing that it is our beliefs that essentially create the magic. Imagine a scenario in which a placebo medicine cures you, despite your cognizance that it is indeed a placebo. This phenomenon might be aptly named Magic Realism.

Magic Realism & Synchronicity
My interpretation of Magic Realism is an extension of these thoughts and has been shaped by a lifetime of experiences, punctuated by events where my intentions seemed to orchestrate situations that extended beyond what could be explained by mere logic or statistical probability.

C.G. Jung used the term 'synchronicity' to describe these seemingly inexplicable, yet deeply interconnected occurrences.

In a slight poetic nod to quantum physics, it sometimes appears as if a focused human consciousness can create minor disruptions in the fabric of space-time.

Naturally, this doesn't imply that one could catch the moon merely by wishing for it. However, on a subtle level, there does seem to be some form of manipulation of time and space occurring through clear, directed thought that's "awared" within a clear consciousness. With these reflections in mind, I return to the ancient bead.

The real inside your Self
An ancient bead can respond like a microphone held close to a loudspeaker.
A feedback is created between your intentional and directed willpower and the bead, or should I say your knowledge of the bead as being a representative of the ancient and the essential inside yourself. A magic bead is in this way like a meditation device helping you in the constant 'self-remembrance' of your own true Buddha nature.

To the left below we have a photo of a Harappan King and/or High Priest. To the right, there is a photo of a Seleucid Greco-Bactrian head in stucco depicting an Indian Buddhist King from the Mauryan Empire. It might be the great Buddhist King Ashoka who formed an alliance with the Seleucid Empire and converted many of Macedonians living there to Buddhism.
These photos show similarly designed headband eye-symbols. The Kings are linked through the headband ornaments they wear; displaying what probably is a symbolic all seeing eye. These eyes are made in the most minimalistic way possible, consisting of two concentric circles.


        Harappan King                         Indian Buddhist King

The Indus Beads displayed below are ornamented with similar designed eyes as one can observe in the Kings head bands. They show the same double concentric circles

13 * 12 * 4 mm
Etched eye Bead


In the Afghan second millennium B.C. bead displayed below, we again find the same eye-logo consisting of two concentric circles etched into the stone.

These ancient beads clearly show the similarity in the design of eye-symbols right from the Indus Valley Civilization and up to the Indian classical time.



This points, as much other evidence, at the cultural link connecting the Indus Valley Civilization to the Indian classical time, especially the Indian, Ashokan Imperial Buddhist civilization. As mentioned, the Indus Valley with its elitarian and spiritual culture with extreme ideals, as still seen in its surviving form, the Jain religion, became popularized in the form of the middle way seeking Buddhism from around 400 B.C.

The all seeing Eye of God, King, and State
Seen in the royal or priestly context, the headband with the Eye was likely to be a symbolic ornamental item of royal or imperial insignia. The King/priest represents the divine order manifested on earth.

The King of Consciousness
It was most probably a manifestation of the all seeing Eye of the King and the state, with either the ability to administer spiritual blessings or punitive actions, delivered according to the law of karma, not only seen as an abstract spiritual force but also as the 'will' of the Empire. The Priest King, as Ashoka indeed was, was the personification of the omnipresent consciousness that 'awares' everything.


Ancient Buddhist terra cotta
Eye Bead from Sri Lanka


The Third Eye as the Magic Eye
In the case of an enlightened and just Emperor like the great Buddhist King Asoka, it would, therefore, be more fitting to talk about the good Eye than the more in folklore typical, evil eye. It is also natural to relate the headband insignia Eye to the Indian notion of the spiritual all seeing Third Eye.
Seen from that perspective, it is interesting to observe the seemingly casual way the Buddhist King to the right has put his all seeing Third Eye; not in the center, but to the right side.


This asymmetry makes together with the king's almost sorrowful, deep, subtle and peculiar individual face expression to an almost too human king; too aware of the enormous responsibility it is to rule an Empire. By putting the headband eye to the side, he also is putting himself aside, making way for a spiritual power greater than his own human and frail assessments; namely the all-pervading compassion and knowledge of Lord Buddha himself. I cannot help seeing the similarity between this face and later constructions of the suffering Jesus.

Seen in comparison the Harrapan Priest/King looks more introvert. He has almost closed his eyes to the world. Only his third eye of God is wide open. He leaves it to God to take of his Kingdom, while he himself is absorbed in introspection.


15 * 7 * 3 mm

13 * 8 * 3 mm

11 * 8 * 4 mm

Super ancient Eye Beads with a high content of iron.
Mesopotamia 3.300 BCE
These beads are extremely rare!

The Shield of Consciousness
To summarize the central thesis, the Eye has historically represented a symbol of regal and spiritual protection. Just as a King or High Priest cared for his people during times of war, famine, or spiritual assaults from predatory animistic forces, so are you safeguarded from the Evil Eye when you come into possession of the all-seeing Third Eye of the King/Priest.

This protection is rooted in consciousness, which is intimately tied to sight and light. Consequently, we often use the term 'enlightenment' to denote higher states of consciousness.

In essence, you are shielded by your conscious awareness. Absence of this awareness might cause you to stumble and falter in life's journey. It's your conscious vigilance that serves as a protective layer, guiding your path and warding off any negative influences. Therefore, cultivating awareness becomes paramount, acting as your personal guardian against unseen adversities.


Eye Beads made of Glass

          9 * 2 mm       -     9* 7 * 2 mm    -      8 * 5 * 2 mm

These rare Eye Beads are from the early historic time -
Most probably from the Taxila period  300 BC- 100 AD

Guarding against Malicious Intent
The symbolic eye can be perceived as a manifestation of thought-intentions projected from one individual to another. In the day-to-day existence, whether it was 2000 years ago or in a contemporary Buddhist Newari household in Patan, Nepal, a neighbor's envious gaze can be harmful.

When you focus your awareness on them and their actions, they become cognizant that you understand their thoughts and intentions through your metaphorical third eye. This realization often leads them to reconsider their actions or, at the very least, weakens their negative thought energy to a certain degree.

The power of the 'protective eye' here is in the awareness it represents, acting as a deterrent to harmful intentions. This awareness, symbolized as the 'third eye', lets others know that their thoughts and intentions are not hidden, thereby reducing the potential harm they might cause. It serves as a reminder of the social and spiritual implications of our thoughts and actions, promoting a more mindful and harmonious interaction.


Magic eye bead in orbicular jasper from the
Indus Valley Civilization

Eye Symbols as Charms for Fortune 
Eye symbols are often associated with warding off misfortune or unfavorable destiny. Eye-beads appear to have been used from the Middle East to the Far East as a means to deflect the energies of the evil eye. This practice spans cultures from Egypt, where eye-beads were placed in royal tombs, to India and China, where possessing an eye-bead served as a personal talisman against negative forces.

The mystical logic behind this use of eye-beads can be encapsulated in the familiar saying: "an eye for an eye". The striped patterns or eye motifs on the Dzi bead were crafted to repel adverse energies. The protective eyes on the bead functioned as a metaphysical shield, akin to an antibiotic defense against harmful influences.

The bead's design itself played a significant role. A bead's smooth roundness, much like a totem, was believed to ward off evil forces. This attribute, tied to the design of the beads, extends to all types of beads: a beautifully crafted bead, even without eye motifs or magical stripes, was believed to act as a repellent against malicious thoughts.
Beyond our secular Western societies, it seems that this animistic perspective on reality persists in various cultures. This may explain why the magic eye bead still occupies a prime position in the hierarchy of bead collectors. The belief in its protective and luck-enhancing properties remains alive in many parts of the world.

15 * 8 mm
A strange fossil eye bead from the Indus Valley Culture

Talismanic Concentration
In conclusion, any object can function as an amulet if one believes it to be so. The amuletic power of beads, therefore, cannot be separated from the belief system that the bead's owner subscribes to.

This perspective posits that the world is a construction of collective minds subscribing to a shared narrative of reality.

To perceive the world as a projection of thoughts aligns closely with the philosophy of Indian religions. In Western thought, we often differentiate between realities crafted by the mind, deemed as 'unreal', and positivist science, regarded as 'real'. However, ancient Indian philosophy advanced the notion that the observer is instrumental in creating the observed, a concept that echoes the principles of quantum physics, long before the advent of these modern scientific theories.


19 * 6 mm
Magic eye bead is from the
Indus Valley Civilization

Thus, the initial assertion that beads hold power when one believes they do isn't a statement rooted in skepticism or positivism. In fact, it's an acknowledgement of the extent to which consciousness shapes our world - a concept that science has yet to fully embrace. Through the lens of biocentrism, ancient beads indeed possess power. They carry the charge of your conscious thoughts and intentions, as well as those of countless generations before you. The energy they hold is a testament to the enduring interconnectedness of human consciousness throughout history.

24 * 10 mm
Translucent eye bead
Indus Valley civilization or
early classical period

Beads as amulets
- A strong and focused mind attracts a powerful bead 
Ancient eye beads indeed serve as true amulets. Their power amplifies with their beauty and the quality of their artistic design. The bead's form plays an integral part in its potency. The reason is simple: an extraordinary, well-crafted bead garners more attention and willpower than a poorly made, insignificant one.

In essence, it's only a resolute, unwavering mind that truly merits a magical bead. The bead's magic originates from the field of awareness itself, becoming an impeccable focal point for attention and concentration. This dynamic uncovers the deeper animistic psychology behind ancient amulets. Metaphorically, consciousness has often been associated with light, hence the term 'enlightenment' to describe the blossoming of consciousness.


This beautiful translucent natural eye bead is from the
Indus Valley Civilization

The design of a magical bead, often crafted as an Eye Bead, is purposeful. It both receives and reflects your own conscious light, amplifying and focusing it back through the bead's eye, similar to how ordinary diffused light is transformed into focused laser light when projected through a ruby.

Just as precious stones like rubies and diamonds have this transformative quality, so too does the Eye Bead in the realm of consciousness.

Viewed through the lens of this third eye, the bead holds the distinction of being the world's most ancient tool of amuletic magic.


25 * 10 mm

A mysterious colored agate Eye Bead.

Today, the understanding of the power of the Indus Valley Eye Beads seems to be largely forgotten. Most recognize only the Tibetan Dzi-beads as potent amulets. Yet, the Indus beads are dormant treasures from a culture far older than the Tibetan. These beads are akin to sleeping power plants. All they require is your conscious recognition to awaken from their millennial slumber.

Strange Indus Valey
Snake Eye Bead



In this old bead the eye is made of crystal
Period: Around 1000 A.D.

The eye bead displayed below is not very old. It has a modern shape.  However, it has an incredible and rare eye design! It takes several thousand kilos of agate and good luck to produce such a bead. The bead is most probably made in Taiwan. Still, I love it, because a really rare and beautiful design can in my opinion substitute for age.

32 * 11 mm


Buddhist beads as cultural ambassadors
In Tibetan Buddhism, beads serve as powerful cultural emissaries, with Dzi-beads representing the zenith of their artistic expression. These beads, recognized for their commanding allure and dramatic visual appeal, have effectively popularized Tibetan Buddhism worldwide. Their impact is particularly pronounced in the Far East, where they've become an iconic representation of Buddhism.

The enchanting aspect of Dzi beads emanates from the subtle influence of Bön, an ancient Tibetan spiritual tradition, within Tibetan Buddhism. Intriguingly, the spread of Buddhism in regions like China and the broader Far East has been facilitated more by the undercurrents of magical thinking than by the formal teachings of Buddha.

The captivating influence of Dzi-beads isn't limited to the East, however. They've also found their way into Western culture, with celebrities like Sting frequently seen sporting a revered 9-eyed Dzi-bead during performances.

In recent times, there's been a marked upswing in the West's interest in Buddhism. Affluent Western societies are increasingly finding the tenets of Buddhism more congruent with their modern lifestyles than traditional Christian doctrines. Hollywood has consistently shown a fascination with Tibet and the Dalai Lama, a fascination that has only been amplified with the growing interest in meditation and mindfulness practices.

In contrast, Hinduism, with its rigid caste structure and pantheon of deities, struggles to resonate with the Western mindset. Buddhism, on the other hand, with its emphasis on compassion, mindfulness, and logical reasoning, presents a narrative framework that, with some contemporary adjustments, aligns well with the principles of a post-modern world.


Solomons agate Eye Beads