Next time you see somebody trying to read your mind on a street in Srinagar, don’t be alarmed. He could be Kashmir’s illusionist Raja Aadam. An illusionist, he has many tricks up his sleeves, reports Zafar Aafaq
Raja Adaam, 20, who hails from Batagund village of Tral in South Kashmir introduces himself as an illusionist and finds it aversive to be called a magician.
Currently pursuing B-Tech from Srinagar’s SSM College, Aadam’s journey as an illusionist began when his class-mate showed him hoodwinking tricks, creating curiosity in Aadam to learn them.
But the class mate, who would call his tricks as magic, refused to teach Aadam. The curious Aadam made effective use of internet to learn.
One day he found an email contact of a UK based hypnotist while surfing internet. The two interacted for some days. Unsure of the reality of hypnotism, Aadam told him that he does not possess any such powers. However, the hypnotists reply stunned Aadam. “He revealed the names of things that surrounded me at that moment,” Aadam says.
The stunning experience strengthened his belief in unbelievable. The hypnotist sent Aadam couple of DVD which had lectures on the subject of hypnotism.
Aadam started to practice the techniques and he got positive results. The transcendent results were of elation and prompted him to reveal them to his friends. “They were fascinated to see me doing what they had only seen on TV,” Aadam said.
Later, the villagers came to know about Aadam’s ability. He received mixed response. Some encouraged but most of the villagers, Aadam says, termed his art Un-Islamic. However, Aadam found motivation in his father’s advice. “One day we were watching a talent Show on TV and my father told me to participate on a larger platform,” Aadam said.
The opposition from people brought Aadam closer to his religion. “In order to convince people I studied the religion comprehensively to understand the difference between lawful and prohibited aspects of magic.”
The study of religion also prevented Aadam to learn or practise black magic, he says. “I make use of science to perform what appears to the audience as illusionary tricks,” Aadam said.
Aadam’s first demonstration was at his college. Then in November, he performed at a university in Jalandhar, Punjab.
The audiences’ response encouraged Aadam to perform at bigger platforms. Thus, Aadam participated in Kashmir’s Got Talent — hosted at Kashmir University’s Convocation Complex. Aadam bagged the second position.
The performance helped Aadam get recognised by some influential men. “Dr Shah Feasal, then Director School Education, invited me to his office and encouraged me to continue performing,” recalls Aadam. “He promised every possible support.”
In February, 2016, he travelled to Amritsar, Punjab, to audition for popular TV show India’s Got Talent.
He qualified the auditions. That time he got some media gaze. His feat was covered by the local media. Thereafter, he had to perform on the television in summer of 2016.
He received invitation letter but could not perform in the reality show telecasted on ‘Colors TV’ channel.
“The letter said that I will receive a call from the organisers of the show, but that call never came,” Aadam said.
The wait proved long as the current season of the said show is already over. “I am hopeful that I will get to participate in the next season of the show,” said Aadam.
Aadam has numerous tricks in his armour. The card and mind reading tricks he can perform in any situation easily, but his main focus is levitation – an aspect of illusion which involves raising things in air.
He can levitate coins, currency notes and playing cards in air. “I have gained around 60 percent mastery in it,” said Aadam.
However, Aadam, is taking baby steps in the field of hypnotism and future prediction. “For a magician to gain cent percent command on such tricks, one need resources and financial support,” said Aadam, who is looking for sponsors.
Recently, Omar Trumbo, a local businessman, sponsored couple of his videos, where Aadam is seen performing the acts of levitation.
Aadam is working on a technique which will help him talk to spirits.
“Magicians associated with Paranormal Society of India use costly devices to talk to sprits,” said Aadam. “I have been successful significantly in doing so without the assistance of devices.”
However, Aadam is afraid of making a public demonstration of this illusionary technique. “I am not sure how people will react.”
Aadam’s mastery to use a martial arts technique, where he touches pressure points in human body to create magical tricks, sets him apart from others. “I introduced pressure points technique in India,” said Aadam.
This particular trick enables Aadam to stop hands of a wristwatch by just touching a person’s palm. He can raise a metallic coin even.
“By pressing particular pressure points, the energy released is used to create hoodwinking,” said Aadam.
Aadam dreams of performing on international platform. “I want to act in films which have stories based on such subjects,” said Aadam.
His dream is to establish a magic school for Kashmiri children, where aspirants can realize their dreams.