Artifacts, Antiques, & Fine Collect i bles. Ancient Chinese/Tibet Jade Buddha's Hand & Owl Amulet. The Enlightened and Fearless Right Hand of Buddha " Abhaya Mudra ".
Late Han Dynasty (100-220 AD). This jade, right hand of Buddha carving was obtained from an old collection that once was held in Henan, China.The collection was reportedly moved to Hong Kong in the 1960s. This is the first time it has been offered for sale in the United States. This museum quality image of Buddha's right hand is Extremely RARE and is Guaranteed authentic and original! This item will come with a Certificate of Authenticity (COA) from ANCIENT CIVILIZATIONS.
William Houghton, the President of ANCIENT CIVILIZATIONS. A State of Washington Licensed Business, assumes all responsibility for the information contained in this description and for the English translation and transcription of the ancient Chinese graphic characters. Furthermore, I prohibit the further dissemination of this information in any written, video, or electronic format without my expressed, written approval. This stunning jade amulet is about 2,000 years-old and combines the symbolic raised right hand of Buddha and the symbolism of the owl on the reverse side.
This jade amulet measures 3" (78 mm) tall x 2.0" (51 mm) wide x 1.08 (28 mm) thick and weighs 5.6 oz. In ancient China, jade was thought to ward off Evil Spirits that were thought to luck everywhere.
The once green nephrite jade amulet has turned a fantastic shade of red/orange from being buried for millennia in damp soil that was rich in iron. The iron was absorbed into the hard-jade amulet and has turned it "iron red" as the Chinese say. This is a natural process that takes millennia to complete and one way we know this jade amulet is authentic and original and not a modern replica that has been altered to look old. Below, I have briefly discussed the symbolism of Buddha's raised right hand with extended fingers and the owl on the reverse side of the amulet.
This gesture was shown by Buddha immediately after attaining enlightenment. It symbolizes strength and inner security. It is a gesture which instills a sense of fearlessness to others as well.
Buddhism, which first reached China during the Eastern Han Dynasty, flourished in China's late Han Dynasty and especially in the Six Dynasties Period over 1,500 years-ago and has been a major religion in China ever since. Hand position: In this Mudra, the right hand is generally raised to shoulder height with arm bent. The palm of the right hand faces outwards and the fingers are upright and joined. The left hand hangs downwards by the side of the body. Significance: This gesture was shown by Buddha immediately after attaining enlightenment.
In Japan, this Mudra is shown with the middle finger slightly projected forward. In Thailand and Laos this Mudra is more common in the walking Buddha.
Owl Symbolism in Ancient China. Maotóuying - the harbinger of death. In ancient China, as in many places of the world, the owl was considered an ominous creature, for its appearance supposedly signaled imminent disaster or, even worse, death. Thus, an owl's entry inside the residence of Jai Yi, a Taoist politician during the Han dynasty (206 BCE - 220 CE), spurred him to serious spiritual contemplation. The statesman, however, discovered profound inspiration in the superstitions of his peers.In his poem " The Owl, " Jai Yi questions the creature as to why it has come to him. The bird, of course, is incapable of speaking. Nevertheless, the poet imagines the owl's response, and in that answer the raptor imparts not warnings but, rather, wisdom. Disaster is what fortune leans on. Fortune's where disaster hides. Joy and grief find the same door, as. Good luck and bad find the same seat. The lengthy discourse from the feathered intruder includes the lines above, as translated by Tony Barnstone and Chou Ping, before eventually closing with the following statement. Be free and have trust in your fate. And be a man who seeks what's true.
And though the thorns and weeds may scrape. What can such trifles mean to you?
Jai Yi is not the only one from this time period who reconsidered the owl's supposedly portentous nature. Many of his contemporaries apparently did so as well. "During the Han dynasty, " ornithologist Edward Armstrong explains, ornaments called'owl corners' were set on the corners of roofs to protect dwellings from fire. " He explains that due to the creature's reputation as a "bird of darkness, the bird and its image were thought capable of preventing lightning strikes and the subsequent incineration of buildings. So, although associated with harm and ruin, even the owl was clearly believed at times to possess protective qualities.
This amazing hand of Buddha contains an estimated 50+ ancient, Chinese pictographic characters that have been carved/engraved in low relief into the jade. I have been able to read and translate some of the characters, but the smaller ones have been obscured by the pitting and weathering this jade amulet suffered when it was buried in the damp earth over 2,000-years-ago. And in macro photos, if you look very carefully, you can see very tiny ancient Chinese characters that are only about 3-5 mm in length that have been engraved in very low relief into all sides of this jade hand. These characters tell us the details of this jade offering by the sons and grandsons of the deceased to Buddha and to the Ancestors.
These inscriptions represent the enduring power of jade and of the offerings to transport the soul of the departed safely from Earth to the Heavens and eternal life. As stated above, there are at least 50 Chinese pictographic characters on this jade hand. Some of these incredibly early pictographic characters are difficult for me to translate, but here is my best transcription. I assume all responsibility for this English transcription of these graphic characters and prohibit the further dissemination of this information in any format with my expressed written approval. As noted above, on the back of Buddha's hand there are Chinese characters that appear to have been painted directly onto the jade.The paint was likely a pigment made from red cinnabar that had been ground into a powder and mixed with a medium like water. The painted figures have turned black from oxidation, which is typical of figures that were painted onto jade millennia ago.
It appears to show a Son and Grandson making this offering to Buddha and the Ancestors. It is meant to state to Buddha and the Ancestors in Heaven (Tien) that the person who presents this jade hand to Buddha has achieved success on Earth and is not afraid of death; thus, he should be granted immorality in Heaven with Buddha. There are many characters of the sons and grandsons documenting that they presented many offerings to the Ancestors, including in macro photos I've highlighted in a black rectangle in photos # 7 & 8.
In photo # 8 you will also see a stick figure diving headfirst from the Heavens. That is an Ancestor who is diving down to Earth to accept the offerings being presented to him/her.
There are an additional 10+ characters inside this rectangle that are too faint for me to identify. There are several characters that show the sons and grandsons killing many animals with a curved, flint knife in their right hands.
This was a standard offering made by the Son and grandsons of the deceased to ensure his father would have a safe journey to Heaven to spend eternity with his Ancestors. See photo # 4 to see the animal that was sacrificed. In photos # 9 & 10 you will see an Ancestor or perhaps Buddha accepting the offerings. There are an additional 30+ characters inside this rectangle that are too faint for me to identify. The grandsons able to stand upright are shown beneath the son (their father) holding up their hands in prayer or with the flint knife they used to kill beasts for the sacrifice.The grandsons too young to stand upright, crawl between the legs of their fathers, oftentimes resembling frogs. Sometimes, the grandsons are figured like the soon, but holding a length of yarn, which is a symbol of the succession of generations.
Several stick figures that look like men with round heads, which is actually the character for an ancestor who is receiving this offering to the gods and ancestors. Lastly, in macro photo # 12 you will see an inscription of some 30+ characters on the lateral edge of Buddha's index finger! Condition As noted above, although this jade pendant is shows signs of differential weathering and it has a wonderful ancient patina.
It has not been repaired or restored, but has been partially cleaned in China by the previous owner to show the beauty of the jade and to reveal the characters. The jade amulet has two, small, curved holes on the back side of the amulet that would have been used for suspension around the neck. These holes are curved and are called Ox-Nose Holes; they have been drilled by ancient hand tools at low RPM from both sides of the amulet--see macro photos. These are period correct and have a wonderful layer of calcium and micro-crystalline jade inside the bore holes-just perfect. Please look carefully at the photos, taken with macro lens, since they are part of the description.Some photos taken indoors with a strong light to show the beauty of Buddha's hand. Would make a wonderful addition to your collection or a Super gift! This item is in the category "Collectibles\Religion & Spirituality\Buddhism\Amulets & Pendants". The seller is "houghton-usa" and is located in this country: US. This item can be shipped to United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Australia.
Age: 100--220 AD