A talisman (taweez) is any object that is imbued with protective powers and the most efficacious are those that are inscribed with prayers that evoke the name of God and the Prophet Muhammad and his companions. The ninety-nine names of God, verses from the Qur’an, and sayings of the Prophet (hadith), for example, are appropriated and regenerated into texts that are meant to be good omens. Talismans that contain inscriptions with the names of prophets and religious figures have the power to protect an individual from hardship and danger by acting as conduits between these holy figures and anyone carrying the talisman.
Inscription: Nadee Ali
Country of Origin: Afghanistan
Age: Late 1800s
Metal: 925 Sterling Silver
Length: 45 mm
Height: 67 mm
Width: 4 mm
Translation of Nadee Ali and the Story Behind it:
When Prophet Muhammad ﷺ laid siege to the fort of Khaybar, the walls were well-fortified and the army could not break through. The Angel Gabriel came to the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ and told him to recite the Naad-e Ali:
Nade Ali, Nade Ali, Nade Ali
Nade Aliyyan mazhar al-ajaib
Tajidahu auman lakafin-nawaib
Kullu hammin wa ghammin
sayanj-i Ali bi wilayatika,
Ya Ali! Ya Ali! Ya Ali!
Call Ali call Ali call Ali,
the manifestation of marvels
He will be your helper in difficulty
Every anxiety and sorrow will end
Through your friendship.
O Ali, O Ali, O Ali
Sayidna Ali came to the Prophet’s ﷺ aid, in an act of heroism commemorated in the lines of a qawwali:
The walls shake; the doors quake. Now all of Khaybar trembles hearing the name of Ali.
Ali came and tore down the gate of the fort, and the army of the Prophet ﷺ crossed over and successfully ended the siege. Sayidna Ali, of course, was a valiant fighter within in the fort and when victory was achieved, the Angel Gabriel appeared to Prophet Muhammad again and said to him:
There is no hero but Ali; there is no sword but Dhu’lfiqar.
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