The spell can briefly be defined as the belief that nature may be affected by using supernatural powers. The first human communities took their conceptions of supernatural power from nature itself.
Man possessed little informed knowledge of nature, even as regards the simplest subjects, and considered nature a terrifying power, which people could experience in every field of life. Eventually that power became isolated from the concept of nature itself and took on an entirely different identity.
The first human beings believed that protection from this power and all its manifestations was necessary, and began conceiving of these matters as taboos. It was believed that if a person broke a taboo, the only way he could survive was be employing a magical spell. In the first examples of spells, we find ourselves dealing with the concept of using supernatural forces to get rid of other supernatural forces.
In this framework of thinking, the parts all add up to a whole, and things done to the whole also affect the component parts. This understanding is the source of the analogical spell. That is why people believe if they cast a spell on an object that belongs to someone else, that person will also be affected by the spell, or they believe that if they pour water on the ground, it will rain.
Some people believe that if an effigy is made of the person whose death is desired is made and that effigy is tortured, that will affect the person it represents in exactly the same way. This idea eventually leads to the individual being identified with the symbol.
That is why the ancient Turks never referred to the wolf by its proper name, “kurt,” but used other names such as “böcü”, “börü”, “canavar”. Similar to this belief, in some parts of Anatolia people still draw circles around the places they live and accompany this with prayers, in the belief that the circle will act as a wall to protect them from wild animals.
There are different kinds of spell, which are generally divided into black and white. While white spells aim to produce beneficial results, black spells are used for evil purposes. In Turkey, spells are generally used to make a man more attached to his family or to moderate his behaviour in some way, to make someone love , to find an object which has been lost, to defeat the enemy, to create better fortune or to create a misunderstanding between two people.
For instance, in order to cast a love spell, three peppers are taken, the sura Tebbet of the Koran is read out for the each seed of the peppers, although these are kept separate from one another. After the readings have been made, the seeds are put back inside the peppers and buried in ashes. The person casting the spell hits the right wall of the house and says:
I hit my hand on the wall
The wall shattered into three
Brainy came out from the first
And Ismail the fairy from the other
I sent Brainy to the cave
I sent Ismail fairy to....... (The name of a person whose love is desired)
Who comes to me without stopping or resting?
Although many spells involve reading extracts from the Koran, magic is actually definitively prohibited in Islam.
Spells generally frighten people, no matter whether used good or bad purposes. For this reason there are a number of means by which one can protect oneself from spells cast by someone else. These include performing ritual ablutions with water from a mill, jumping over rivers, or casting a counter-spell.