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Angels and Demons in Jerusalem

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Angels and Demons in Jerusalem

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A new exhibition – Angels and Demons – has opened at the Bible Lands Museum in Jerusalem. The focus is on Jewish magic and mystical symbolism and the display includes artifacts as well as documentation. Entering on the right foot brings luck, as does the hamsa – a symbol shaped like an upside-down hand.

A Jewish magic practitioner Yitzhak Mizrahi explains: “We have many cases in Israel of spirits, like souls of deceased people who don’t move on but stay in the house. That can cause bad luck or phenomena that scare the residents of the house, so we write what we call a Solomon seal. The purpose of this is to release the spirits from the house in order to purify it.”

The exhibition distinguishes between what it calls white magic – like amulets containing blessings for health, marriage, easy birth and success in business – and black magic like love spells or spells to make people unwittingly share their secrets.

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