mala, Buddhist rosary in cedar wood, amazonite from Lake Baikal, silver 925, cloisonné, vegetable ivory.
The mala, trengwa, in Tibetan is the rosary of the Buddhist, the object from which the monk (or even the lay practitioner) almost never separates, holding it in the hand or wrapped around the wrist.
The mala is first of all a utilitarian onjet: it serves as a tactile support for the recitation of mantras, at the same time as it is used to count them if one has set oneself to repeat a definite number.
The mala is composed of 108 strung pearls, which justifies its name, since it simply means "garland" (of pearls). The different components each contain a precise symbolic meaning: The big pearl (or Buddha's head) that closes the loop marks the knowledge of emptiness. The small cone that surmounts it is the mark of emptiness itself. The cord on which the beads are strung must, theoretically, be a braid of several threads:
three sons symbolize the "three Bodies" of a Buddha (Absolute Body, Body of Glory and Body of Emanation);
Five sons symbolize the "five wisdoms" or "five families" of Buddhas (Buddha family, vajra family, jewel family, lotus family, activity family)
nine sons symbolize the primordial Buddha Vajradhara and the eight great bodhisattvas.
During the Chinese Neolithic period appeared many objects with a strong symbolic value. Among these is the disc "bi" or "pi" (the latter name is more frequently used in the West; it is due to the transcription of Chinese into English by the British Thomas Francis Wade in the 19th century).
In antiquity, the disk was called "bi" or "pi" the treasure inherited by those who are under the sky. Variable in size according to use and era, its thickness varies from 1 to 10 mm. The dictionary of the scholar Xu Shen, during the Han Dynasty (206 BC - 221 AD)
Nowadays, it is called "Ping an kou", "Luo han yan"
"Huai gu", which in Chinese means "to bring good luck and keep safe and sound".
The Sub-Neolithic period and in particular the Shang dynasty (1600-1027 BC) saw the appearance of hemmed discs around the central orifice (Chuling bi). These same records found their way into the Sanxingdui culture of Sichuan, around the same time. Some pieces bore traces of incisions traced in concentric circles.
The Chinese Pi became popular from the Zhan Guo dynasty, it is known by its name "Bi", and is worn since then by the populations of these ancient dynasties.
The "bi" or "pi" disc is a flat disc with a circular hole in its center. It appears in the funeral context and testifies to the rank and status of the deceased. Then it becomes symbol of the sky, of the celestial universe, round and infinite and badge of protection, as well as pledge of alliance between the emperor and his vassals. It also symbolizes creation, social rank and supreme power.
The exterior of the Chinese Pi, perfect circle, means that the earth is vast, infinite and limitless. The inner piercing of the Pi promotes the entry of new energies; He prays serenity, our inner peace.
The space of the Chinese Pi conceals all the magnificence of nature. It highlights tolerance and harmony when we synchronize our heart with earth and heaven. It brings wealth and security to those who wear it. Its round shape means propitious, happy and perfect, people wear it to have a safe life.
The circle symbol of infinity. Including ying and yang the masculine and feminine principle, good and evil.
Pierced in its center the PI calls in its center the meeting of the two concepts, remember the symbol of ying and yang where each carries in its center the principle of the other.
The circle is the inclusion and perfect representation of our world, nature, humanity spirituality... The symbolic representation of the circular PI also comes from the fact that a positive aspect of our world exists only by its negative opposite, one exhalted by the other, one existing only by the other, the circle being the perfect completion of two elements fitting harmoniously.
According to legend it can avoid misfortunes, it nourishes and protects the body, it is also a symbol of social status and wealth.
The disc "bi" or "pi" was originally a ritual or ceremonial object to celebrate the worship of the sky and that of the sun. It was associated with the "cong", a parallelepiped pierced by a hole at its top, which represents the terrestrial world, square. Some have suggested that its true meaning is the emptiness it embraces...
The "bi" or "pi" discs, when they were small, could be suspended from the belt by a cord, like lucky charms.
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