Buddhist Belief in Charms and Black Magic


Originally uploaded by: Roli Schoenholzer

It is common practice among many Asian communities to think that they are the victims of black magic and charms whenever they face some unhappy experiences in their lives. At the slightest indication that something unpleasant has happened they would often run off to consult seers, astrologers, mediums, and ‘bomohs’.

Of course, the livelihood of these vendors of magic and charms depends on telling their customers that something is wrong or that some evil forces have been employed by someone to bring about their family misfortune. They then claim to be able to counteract these evil forces and charge large sums of money by promising to ‘cure’ them. More often than not, the only effect is that these unsuspecting victims end up becoming lighter in their pocket and as a result are none the wiser for their experience.

Popular Buddhism has not been spared by the antics of these quacks and charlatans, some of whom even going to the extent of masquerading themselves and monks to make a fast dollar from their unsuspecting victims. But the Buddha has declared in no uncertain terms that many of our misfortunes are essentially created by the untrained impure minds and it is only through our own efforts and understanding that we will be able to overcome them.

In this country particularly there are a great many such beliefs. This many be because the three major races have their own peculiar beliefs, and a great deal of interchange have taken place so much so that there had developed a tremendously varied set of beliefs, which are uniquely Malaysian.

The Buddhist cure for misfortune of any kind is a scientific as the methods of modern psychiatry. It is summarized in the Second Noble Truth – The Cause of Suffering. Before we can look for a cure to misfortune (ill luck, bad health, loss of someone or something personal and family problems) we must go to the root of it. We must examine rationally what actually is happening and understand that only we alone can overcome the misfortune. Concentration certainly will strengthen the mind to understand the cause of the problems in order to find a solution.

In the case of sickness, a calm mind helps to affect a cure faster. By merely appealing to the Supernatural to overcome misfortune is not the proper solution to end suffering. We must reflect calmly that misfortune is the lot of anyone who is born into this world and that what happens to us must be looked at rationally so that a reasonable solution could be found. This is not fatalistic; it shows that each individual, using the right effort can rid himself of misfortune.

This is based on “Buddhism For The Future, “by Dr. K. Sri Dhammananda.


  1. Voodoos? In the Philippines, this is usually perform by bad witches. In most cases, these kind of rituals uses dolls in which they will say a prayer to this small dolls and whatever they do to the dolls, will happen to you. They used it for revenge on their enemy. They are very powerful, in a few days time their victims are usually found dead. Scary, I tell you.

  2. They also have that in Thailand and Laos, but it’s mostly use for charms, assuming if you want someone to fall in love with you, then they’ll make a pair dolls of male and female, I don’t know if it really work, but one thing for sure, these black magics are scary, if you don’t believe, don’t mock.

    I also heard in the past that they can actually prove in court that someone’s murdered with voodoo, I tried to look earlier but there were too many and not sure which one for sure.

  3. Was about to mention how popular these things are here in the Philippines, especially in the rural areas where locals are rumored to cast evil spells as K mentioned.

    Anyhow, I love buddhism. There’s something beautiful about it, very principled. My folks would certainly disapprove of me changing my religion, especially in a Catholic country but I’m so attracted to it.

  4. Hi Mithi, I have a Buddhism blog that I created for personal references but I’m sharing it with others and these last 2 posts should be posted there but I’ll be using these on my next post of “The Jatukarm Ramathep Fever”, I’m not sure of the title yet, but still have to do more research. To me, blogging is a learning process, some of the topics that I blog about, I have very little knowledge and have to do some research.

    I grew up in a Buddhist family but we’re not that strict and I’ve gone to church before, visiting more or less but the feeling of home is at the Buddhist Temple, might be because I love the architecture of the Temple, the sound of the chanting, and the serene looks of the Buddha statue.

    You don’t have to convert yourself to Buddhism but still can incorporate some of the teaching into your daily life because the teaching is mainly science, and philosophy that we all can relate. The only problem is, your family might not like it if you even mention the word Buddhism, because of fear of the unknown, but really, it’s just a way of life. I’m not afraid to learn about other religions mainly because I’ve a solid foundation in Buddhism.

  5. Oh wow. Your reply was wonderful. That’s prolly true, the thing about my family not liking it due to fear of the unknown. Thanks for saying that I don’t really have to convert to Buddhism but can still practice the philosophy. I’m really learning a lot through your blog entries so keep blogging. 😉

  6. Many poeple don’t believe in this kinda stuff but it’s real. My stpe mother is a hard core witch. She has place many spells on people. She also can see and speak to ghosts. There’s many things that people don’t believe. I don’t care if you believe it or not. These are just the hard sore facts. She has killed poeople befor with magic. She is not an evil witch. The man she killed tried to kill her daughter soo… She does how ever do VooDoo but is not evil.

    • Hi Lindsey Baker, thanks for your visit and comment. I do have to agree that VooDoo is very real, I heard about a case in NYC that they were able to prove a murder via VooDoo, kind of scary and I certainly won’t want to make an enemy with anyone that have black magic. Where I came from, Laos and Thailand, there’s a lot of black magic, some are real, and some practice under a false pretense.

      I think for those that have black magic, if they misused it, then it can backfire and destroy them, something not to mess around with imo.

    • Hi Lindsey, I was wondering if your step mum can help me as I believe that somone has done some black magic on my boyfriend – is it possible to have a contact number for your step mum. Will she be able to hlp me.



  7. I believe voodoo can get u if u ate , smell things from the witch. When it get into you , it will mess with your brain (headache / unbalance) , annoying, uncomfortable , bad dreams, frustrated , chill – hotcold sometimes , trembling, feeling hopeless and unreasonable feeling ( like someone touch ur back or spilt water but there is no one there) and doctor can’t find anything wrong.

    I am buddhist and I still keep holding this believe that only we can save ourself – We become what we thought – buddha.
    Everytimes this unreasonable feeling comes , I always keep aware on goodness thought , emptiness and present moment. It all began last year with my big mouth talking ” there is no such thing spirit and voodoo”

    Now I realized these thing do exist BUT still finding the logical answer what was really happened ! something else in the air ???

    • Hi Leo, thanks for sharing. Not knowing the unknown doesn’t bother me as much, but I guess it is in our nature to want to know the bottom line of things. It’s very scary to come across these black magics, taunting with the darkness that we can’t see with our naked eyes and explain with simple logic but I think certain things are better left alone. I think something is definitely in the air. 🙂

      • Hi leo ny name is sanh dethmongkhonh .in a victim i been experiencing this vudoo stuff black magic for almost 5 years nowand everything you saud from the back straight down i been experiencing and as we speak ..lol omg i need you to inbox me so you r a budda???

  8. I am experiencing a supernatural experience. I would like to talk to a professional about this and get an oppion please my number is 9168626369 r 9166442708 thanks so much…
    sincerely sanh dethmongkhonh

    • Hi Sanh, thank you for visiting my blog, sorry I don’t have much knowledge about the supernatural to be able to help you. Have you try visiting the temple and talking to the monk? They might be able to give you advice.

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