Traditionally Tibetan are very fond of the jewelry. Every man and woman should have a piece of gold on their body. We believe it will enhance the spiritual power over the bad omens and evil spirits. The primarily in jewelry components are gold and silver with the ornaments of precious stone. We not only use jewelry for oneself, but also on the statues of Deities and Buddha. Offering jewelry to the holy statues are often consider to generate lots of positive virtue for the donor.
Basic Components of Tibetan jewelry
Gold is the number of choices for all our jewelry. We have a staying in Tibetan, we must have a piece in gold on once body to gain spiritual power over the negative omens and bad energy. You will often find our people using gold teeth, we believe having gold teeth helps prevents one from the poisoning. You will also see us using gold butter lamp and even decorating holy statues with the gold.
We don’t really use much of the silver on once body as jewelry, but we often use silver wear for the offering to the gods in our chapels and temples. You will often find our people using old Chinese silver coins as jewels and also large silver belt buckle for the women in central Tibet especially around the Mount Everest region of Tibet.
Thogcha is the metal from tektites and meteorites which are often high in iron content. We believe thokcha is formed naturally when a thunderbolt strikes the earth. It will be found by chance either on or under the ground by a lucky person. Which is why having a piece of Thogcha is consider as a good luck charm, and some old Thogcha item could be expensive to buy.
Ornaments in Tibetan Jewelry
All the piece of Tibetan Jewelry will have part of ornaments of natural stone. Turquoise and coral are the most favored gemstone. Besides these two, we often use amber, lapis lazuli, jade, garnet, agates, rubies, sapphires, amethyst, carnelian is used too. Yak bone is used in jewelry making.
In the old days, Tibet has a vast collection of gemstones, many of them traveled from far away distances and are a testament to ancient trading links for which no written records exist. Ivory arrived from India. Cloudy yellow amber came from the Baltic. Turquoise and agate were brought in from Afghanistan. Pearls and coral were traded from the Mediterranean. Glass beads were bought from India, China and from eastern Europe.
Tibetan women Jewelry
It is essential for the Tibetan women to dress well and use all the jewelry in the house during the special social occasions. We believe having our women wears all the most elegant jewelry we can manage to purchase to show off the family position in the community. Majority of the Tibetan female deities are dress well in jewelry. Having our wives and mother to dress elegantly with all the jewelry bring good luck and fortune for the family.
In the old times, all the wealthy families would put so many jewels on their women that sometimes they can barely move in the entire structure of ornament.
Tibetan Jewelry for Men
In Tibetan culture, women are considered as the pillar of the house and men as think as the out wall of the house. It is women responsibility to look after the child and day to day activities of the house and men are responsible for making money and working in the fields. Since men will have to do more work, they use less jewelry. The most elegant jewel men would have to Amulet made of gold, silver or ordinary metal base on the family.
All men should have a ring on their finger, it signifies the adulthood of the men. Many men will have gold teeth to prevent one for the food poisoning, are some may have to go to a great distance to earn a living for the family.
Some of the most common Art we use in our jewelry.
Eight Auspicious Symbols:
Tibetan Eight Auspicious symbols are commonly used in all our jewelry. We believe having those symbols on a piece of jewelry will bring prosperities and happiness. Most of the time we will be using one of the eight symbols in it. But on the exquisite jewelry, the goldsmith may use all of the eight symbols on one piece of jewelry.
it is scarce to see the use of mantras on a piece of jewelry. But some are using it. The most famous mantra used in jewelry is that of the OM.
Dzi Beads has capabilities in protecting against the natural calamities and evil spirits. The real Dzi beads can be traced back to the 2000 year or right up to the Indus river civilization. Since old ones are costly to buy. People nowadays are opting to design their gold and silver jewels.
Ritual items: Ritual items like a different kind of vajra are often used in Tibetan Jewelry. In The Market, you can buy a lot of silver jewels made on the design of Tibetan ritual items.