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Carved Wood Ceremonial Horseman Phurba

Length 14 x Width 3 ¼ x Depth 1 ¼ inches

(L35.5 x W8 x D3 cm)

Shamanic Ceremonial Horseman Phurba

Availability: In Stock
Price: £280.00

Carved Wood Ceremonial Horseman Phurba

Length 14 x Width 3 ¼ x Depth 1 ¼ inches

(L35.5 x W8 x D3 cm)

 

This is not a typical shamanic phurba or ritual dagger, indeed in some ways it appears to be more of a carving than a ritual tool, and yet it shares so many of the elements and symbols commonly found on a traditional phurba that I can only describe it as such.  It is interesting simply as a primitive carving full of shamanic symbolism, but it has some age to it and I believe it to be more than that.   It is more likely to be a ceremonial phurba rather than an everyday ritual tool.

It depicts a horseman, quite possibly a shaman, sitting astride his steed with his hands together holding the reigns, or perhaps praying.  A bow and arrow are carved into each of his sides.  This is a subject often found on antique phurba.  The horse is mounted, crown-like, on the head of a three faced deity.  Most phurba (or phurpa) depict four faces, but since the horse and rider are directional (facing forward) the forth face has been replaced with an endless knot.  The horseman and deity form the hilt of the ritual dagger, beneath which are carved a typical elephant Makara and a three-sided blade.  Two sides feature entwined Nagas and other symbols, while the third has a carved trident, a bumpa ritual pot, and a snake.

 

This fascinating and unusual phurba has been beautifully carved, with great attention to detail.  It has considerable charm and would add interest to any collection of Himalayan ritual objects.

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