Tibetan Inspired Medicine Necklace Turquoise, Coral, Crystals, Repousse, Dzi
TIBETAN Artistry information collected by Suzanne Lewis
In my cross-cultural medicine necklaces I have been impressed how the Tibetan love of stones, crystal, bone, shell, carnelian, blown trade beads; directly reflect what I have seen in many Southwest and Northwest Indigenous tribes artistry. In fact the “Hopi are one of the oldest remaining ancient cultures in North America, known by many as Tibet of the West.”
A long time ago, someone noticed a clear blue line running through gray rock and saw imagery of sky and water in stone, and from that time on, turquoise has been cherished above all else in creation—turquoise stone of sky, stone of water, stone of blessings, good fortune, protection, good health and long life.
Medicine Necklaces, that which makes one vitally well soundly protected. For over 25 years I have been creating these “empowering, protective” necklaces from trade beads, gem stones, fetishes and tribal art. For the past few years, my attention was pulled to the Tibetan tribal beads and their honoring of the oceans, mountains, rivers and natures family. Integrating the Tibetan beautiful art with her deeply rooted Indigenous Peoples’ symbolism has created necklaces and beads representing universal harmony, beauty, empowerment, tenderness.
Beads from the deep blue green seas.
I have been a keen buyer on EBay for ancient Far East Tibetan bead artistry. After my accident, I became obsessed to recover these treasure created in the Tibetans Home lands. I felt like there was an envelope of time before the Chinese would completely vacuum up, erase all the beauty and treasures from the annihilated Tibetans.
With my uncanny super sleuth searching online I discovered a trader in Spain who sprinkles Tibetan treasures along with a Tibetan advocate Dharma store. I wanted to keep alive with great respect some of what Tibetans revered. (Bone, amber, coral, turquoise, lapis, carnelian, garnet, striated agates, obsidian, opalescent, eye beads Dzi, repoussé metal engraved pendants, crystals etc.)
Somewhat like the Native American sentiment regarding the Ghost Dancers who gave everything in order to keep away the harm by settlers , military and pioneers). It’s a promise to remember, to give gratitude to the ancestors, knowing that spirit is eternal and the bead artistry carries the energy, the strength, the qualities who created them, worked them, believed in their holy guidance and stamina to keep the Natural Laws of life, light and nature generated.
I have built up quite a collection, plus when my son traveled to Nepal and Tibet in the late 90s, I had him pick up for me hand hewn turquoise nuggets and amber and traditional mala composed of Bodhi Seeds. Simultaneously I as gaining insight on the relationship of North American Hopi and the Far East Tibetans. The similarities of their relationship respect of the Earth Mother and her elements. Both cultures revere the “Mother Mountain”, her caves, her blood, her rock guardians, her medicine/power animals and Green Medicine/plants kingdom.
It’s quite fascinating the language and symbolic/metaphorical commonality. For me it was almost eerie this internal scenario that informed me to heed the prayers of the peace makers Far East to South West. I was getting that the refugee Tibetans, recognizing they will never literally be able to return to their homeland turned the despair into a prayer that would transfer their rich heritage to a new homeland, to their brothers and sisters from another continent on the other side of the great waters.
Perched on a plateau in the Himalayas 16,000 feet above sea level, Tibet at first glance appears to be a remote country overshadowed by its much larger neighbors–India to the West and China to the East. In fact, Tibet has long been a cultural hub and is known worldwide for its astonishing jewelry. Historically, red coral from the Mediterranean, deep blue turquoise from Iran and pearls and conch shells from the Indian Ocean were imported to supplement native green turquoise, agates and precious metals.