Unravelling the Mysteries of Kameot: Exploring the Supernatural World of Amulets

Amulets, also known as Kameot in Hebrew, have always held a sense of enchantment and enigma.

Their efficacy remains a mystery – what benefits do they offer, if any?

In this article, we will attempt to shed light on this obscure realm of Kameot.

Now, rather than adopting the “rationalist” standpoint that discredits the power of Kameot and the authenticity of Kabbalah, we recognize the supernatural world as a manifestation of Hashem.

My position is that this manifestation can be readily seen by those with open eyes, miracles are real occurrences and the world is in itself a magical place and we’ve just been conditioned to follow a “scientific-mechanistic” paradigm that blocks us (more on this later). Either way, Hashem created a diverse range of forces in Creation, holy and unholy, that can be harnessed by humans using the correct techniques for good or nefarious purposes.

With that introduction in mind, let’s dive in.

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Humans possess incredible mind power

First things first: human beings are Created in the image of Hashem.

That alone imbues us with powers most of us cannot dream about. When people read the Scripture or the Gemara, they often discredit supernatural phenomena like super-human strength, divine wisdom and miracles in general.

But even science nowadays (the part that’s revealed to us) is starting to accept that the human body and mind can harness tremendous power. Thought, speech and action, can and do alter reality as quantum physics posits. The way to access this power is through focus, willpower and a cessation (or at least diminution) of contact with the physical world (and this is why many Kabbalists fast a lot).

The more a person can restore his fragmented mind (through prayer, meditation, purification, pleasure deprivation and so on), the more power he wields.

That said, the techniques used to harness these divine forces primarily involve the mind, emotions, and speech working in conjunction. In the past, these techniques were freely used as people were accustomed to live with less, but in modern times, we have lost the ability to focus. Because of that, the traditional knowledge of the powers of Creation, including the names of angels and how to direct them with the proper intention onto the parchment being written.

A little introduction on Kameot

It is a fact that many esteemed Chassidic Rebbes and Kabbalists have utilized and written amulets, including the Ba’al Shem Tov, the Maggid of Mezritch, Rebbe Nachman of Breslov, and numerous Sephardi Kabbalists. Ashkenazi Jews have also reportedly used Kameot, particularly to protect newborn children from harm before the Brit Milah ceremony.

Kameot have been in use since the era of the Tannaic sages of the Mishnah and have been employed extensively for various purposes, including protection, health, wealth, and even fertility. They were typically worn around the neck or wrist and the term Kamea is associated with binding, which aligns with the concept of unifying the forces of Creation for a specific purpose.

Kameot can be composed of text, symbols, or names and can be written in various alphabets, including angelic script (as seen in Sefer Raziel).

The Kameah, combined with Holy or Unholy names that are like keys to Creation, then “absorbs” a person’s intentions and power together, and affects its change in reality. They can be very powerful.

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Interestingly, the Shulchan Aruch allows people to wear Kameot on Shabbat, despite the general prohibition on wearing jewelry and accessories in public areas out of fear that they may be taken out to show off and then carried, which is a rabbinical violation.

So why would the Shulchan Aruch permit Kameot specifically if it was simply “superstition”?

It is worth noting that Rabbi Yosef Karo, who was also a prominent Kabbalist and had contact with the Arizal, did not deny the powers of Kameot. In fact, he himself learned from a Maggid, as he writes in his fascinating book, Maggid Meisharim.

Whether a Kameah is good depends on the writer’s intention and usage of names

Not all Kameot are considered good. In fact, some contain names of demons that were often identified by the great Rav Yitzhak Kaduri when analyzing them. As a result, people have become hesitant to use them, as they don’t want to be associated with such negative entities.

The effectiveness of Kameot varies and may even harm the user by attracting dark forces such as demons. Some people who delve into immorality and impurity of idolatry have become servants of the Sitra Achra (the “other side”, evil) and may learn how to make Kameot to sell or cheat people.

Despite this fact, many other renowned Sephardi Kabbalists, including the Chidah, the Ben Ish Chai, Baba Sali, and Rabbi Mordechai Sharabi, have written Kameot that were tried and true.

However, there are good Kameot written by real Tzaddikim that have been tried and proven effective in helping people. For example, the great Chida (Rabbi Chaim David Azulai) used to write Kameot and was able to help a woman abandon her plans to convert to Christianity by giving her a Kameah with the words of the Shema Yisrael to eat.

It’s worth noting though, that printed Kameot are useless and not worth even their paper.

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Concluding remarks

Clearly, Kameot are an integral part of Jewish Tradition.

Unfortunately, it is difficult to find Kabbalists willing to write good Kameot today. This is not only because very few possess the ability to channel the power of the names into the Kameah, but also because the “recipe” for writing Kameot may not be revealed to them through books or Ruach HaKodesh.

Even Rav Kaduri’s book on Kameot contains only the introduction and “general notes” on how they should made. Like Rav Chaim Vital, he hid his knowledge in a way that no one, except great Tzadikim would truly understand his words.

This is brought in its introduction together with severe warnings on not trying to play around with Holy names as that can cause the angels in charge of them to exact vengeance upon the writer.

While they can be powerful tools for spiritual healing and protection, they can also be dangerous if not used properly. Regardless of one’s stance, it is clear that Kameot hold a significant place in Jewish Tradition, and will continue to be a topic of fascination.

We should not be discourage though, because proper prayer can be just as effective as a Kameah, and much safer.

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Chaim Apsan

Chaim is a teacher and Kabbalah enthusiast. He loves helping Jews connect with true Torah teaching and enhancing their spiritual growth. With a focus on meditation, he guides individuals on transformative journeys of prayer, contemplation, and connection with Hashem. He lives in Jerusalem with his wife and kids, and is committed to sharing the wisdom and power of Kabbalah in a genuine way.

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