Meaning of predating
There is little doubt that the Hamsa Hand emerged as a symbol of oversight and protection long before established religions made their mark upon our world.A common trait of all conquering religions is that ancient beliefs and motifs are subtly incorporated into their respective narratives to enhance the appeal they hold for the unconverted masses.When called the Hand of Mary, the Hamsa/Chamsa is used as a representation of Mary, mother of Jesus.To receive the protection of either of these two women against the ‘evil eye’ was to be under the aegis of God Himself.Their use of the Hamsa Hand may have been inspired by Jewish tradition but it was enriched or diluted, depending on how you perceive matters of religion, by incorporating a worship of ancient pagan deities.This is evident from the position of importance allotted to the goddess, Tanit, as chief protector of the Phoenician capital, Carthage.The Hamsa/Khamsa is the perfect example – it was adopted chronologically by all the major religions that came in the wake of the simple animism where its roots lay.
On the other hand, the traditional reference to the Hamsa in Judaism is also in reference to a female figure, but to the sister of the Jewish prophet, Moses.
As such, it can be said that it is a representation of the ‘Hand of God’.
Judaism is the first of the three Abrahamic religions, predating Christianity by around two millennia and Islam by over 2,700 years.
However, such is the history of mankind that similar ideas spring from minds separated across the vastness of deserts and oceans.
The Hamsa symbol also emerged further east, in the ancient world of India where Hinduism and Buddhism took root.