Attention: open in a new window. PrintE-mail

8 Auspicious Symbols


The emblem of our site is carefully chosen, it is the eight auspicious symbols of Tibetan buddhism grouped together in a perfect symmetry. The emblem represents eight auspicious symbols and each symbol has a meaning and an elaborate description to it. The eight symbols are:

The_Precious_Parasol1. The Precious Parasol - The precious umbrella symbolises the wholesome activity of preserving beings from illness, harmful forces, obstacles and so forth in this life and all kinds of temporary and enduring sufferings of the three lower realms, and the realms of men and gods in future lives. It also represents the enjoyment of a feast of benefit under its cool shade. This was a traditional Indian symbol of protection and royalty. The parasol denoted wealth and status - the more included in a person's entourage, the more influential the person was, with 13 parasols defining the status of king. Indian Buddhists who saw the Buddha as the universal monarch adopted this concept. Besides, 13 stacked parasols form the conical spire of the Buddha or Tath¨¢gata stupa. In Buddhist mythology, the king of the nagas (serpent-like creatures) gave a jeweled umbrella to the Buddha. Symbolically, the protection provided by the parasol is from the heat of suffering, desire, obstacles, illness, and harmful forces. A typical Tibetan parasol consists of a thin round wooden frame with 8, 16, or 32 thinly arched wooden spokes. Through its center passes a long wooden axle-pole embellished at the top with a metal lotus, a vase, and the triple jewel. White, yellow, or multicolored silk stretches over the domed frame and a folded or pleated silk skirt with 8 or 16 hanging silk pendants attached hang from the circular frame. The parasol dome represents wisdom and the hanging skirt, compassion.


The_Victory_Banner2. The Victory Banner - The victory banner symbolises the victory of the activities of one's own and others body, speech and mind over obstacles and negativitities. It also stands for the complete victory of the Buddhist Doctrine over all harmful and pernicious forces. This was traditionally carried in battle. Great warriors would often have banners with their own emblems, the banners being carried on the back of their chariots. Krishna (an incarnation of Vishnu) had a banner bearing the garuda bird (a bird deity). In early Buddhism, the banner represented Buddha's victorious enlightenment with his overcoming the armies of Mara (hindrances and defilements). Legend says the banner was placed on the summit of Mt Meru, symbolizing Buddha's victory over the entire universe. In Tibetan Buddhism, the banner represents eleven methods of overcoming Mara: the development of knowledge, wisdom, compassion, meditation, and ethical vows; taking refuge in the Buddha; abandoning false views; generating spiritual aspiration, skilful means, and selflessness; and the unity of the three sam¨¢dhis of emptiness, formlessness, and desire-less-ness.


The_Right-coiled_White_Conch3. The Right-coiled White Conch - The white conch which coils to the right symbolises the deep, far-reaching and melodious sound of the Dharma teachings, which being appropriate to different natures, predispositions and aspirations of disciples, awakens them from the deep slumber of ignorance and urges them to accomplish their own and others' welfare. The conch shell is thought to have been the original horn-trumpet; ancient Indian mythical epics relate heroes carrying conch shells. The Indian god Vishnu is also described as having a conch shell as one of his main emblems; his shell bore the name Panchajanya, meaning, "having control over the five classes of beings." The conch shell is an emblem of power, authority, and sovereignty; its blast is believed to banish evil spirits, avert natural disasters, and scare away poisonous creatures. In Indian culture, different types of conch shells were associated with the different castes and with male and female. In Buddhism, the conch was adopted as a symbol of religious sovereignty and an emblem that fearlessly proclaimed the truth of the dharma. One of the 32 signs of a Buddha's body is his deep and resonant voice, which is artistically symbolized in images of the Buddha by three conch-like curving lines on his throat. Shells that spiral to the right are very rare and considered especially sacred, the right spiral mirroring the motion of the sun, moon, planets, and stars across the sky. Also, the hair curls on a Buddha's head spiral to the right, as do his fine bodily hairs, the long white curl between his eyebrows, and the conch-like swirl of his navel.A shell is made into Tibetan ritual musical instruments by cutting off the end of its tip and furnishing it with a mouthpiece and an ornamental metal casing that extends from the shell's mouth.


The_Golden_Fish4. The Golden Fish - The golden fish symbolises the auspiciousness of all living beings in a state of fearlessness, without danger of drowning in the ocean of sufferings, and migrating from place to place freely and spontaneously, just as fish swim freely without fear through water. The two fishes originally represented the two main sacred rivers of India - the Ganges and the Yamuna. These rivers are associated with the lunar and solar channels that originate in the nostrils and carry the alternating rhythms of breath or prana (life-sustaining force). Fish have religious significance in Hindu, Jain, and Buddhist traditions as well as in Christianity (the sign of the fish, the feeding of the five thousand). In Buddhism, the fish symbolize happiness as they have complete freedom of movement in the water. They represent fertility and abundance. They are often drawn in the form of carp, which are regarded in Asia as sacred on account of their elegant beauty, size, and lifespan.


The_Golden_Wheel_of_Dharma5. The Golden Wheel of Dharma - The golden wheel symbolises the auspiciousness of the turning of the precious wheel of Buddha's doctrine, both in its teachings and realizations, in all realms and at all times, enabling beings to experience the joy of wholesome deeds and liberation. The wheel is an ancient Indian symbol of creation, sovereignty, protection, and the sun. The six-spoke wheel was associated with Vishnu and was known as the Sudarshana Chakra. The wheel represents motion, continuity, and change, forever moving onwards like the circular wheel of the heavens. Buddhism adopted the wheel as a symbol of the Buddha's teachings and his first discourse at the Deer Park in Sarnath is known as "the first turning of the wheel of dharma." In Tibetan Buddhism, it is understood as "the wheel of transformation" or spiritual change. The hub of the wheel symbolizes moral discipline, and the eight spokes represent analytical insight via rim-meditative concentration. The eight spokes point to the eight directions and symbolize the Buddha's Noble Eightfold Path: right understanding, right thought, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, mindfulness, and concentration.


The_Endless_Knot6. The Endless Knot - The auspicious drawing, The Endless Knot, symbolises the mutual dependence of religious doctrine and secular affairs. Similarly, it represents the union of wisdom and method, the inseparability of emptiness and dependent arising at the time of path, and finally, at the time of enlightenment, the complete union of wisdom and great compassion. This symbol was originally associated with Vishnu and represented his devotion to his consort Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and good fortune. It symbolizes the Buddha's endless wisdom and compassion. It also can represent continuity or dependent origination as the underlying basis of life.


The_lotus_Flower7. The lotus Flower - The lotus flower symbolises the complete purification of the defilements of the body, speech and mind, and the full blossoming of wholesome deeds in blissful liberation. The lotus blossoms unstained from the watery mire; it is a symbol of purity, renunciation, and divinity.







The_Vase_of_Treasure8. The Vase of Treasure - The treasure vase symbolises an endless rain of long life, wealth and prosperity and all the benefits of this world and liberation. This is known as "the vase of inexhaustible treasures" - however much is removed from it, the vase remains perpetually full. In Tibet, wealth vases sealed with precious and sacred substances are commonly placed upon altars and on mountain passes, or buried in water springs. The symbol is often shown as a highly ornate, traditional-shaped vase with a flaming jewel or jewels protruding from its mouth.


News from Across

  • Capitalism and the Dalai Lama 18 Apr 2014 | 6:42 am

    Arthur C. Brooks, Contributing Op-Ed Writer, International New York Times WHAT can Washington, D.C., learn from a Buddhist monk? In early 2013, I traveled with two colleagues to Dharamsala, India, to meet with the Dalai Lama. His Holiness has lived there since being driven from his Tibetan homeland by the Chinese government in 1959. From More>>

  • CTA Holds Prayer Service for Tibetan Self-Immolators 18 Apr 2014 | 6:39 am

    DHARAMSHALA: The Department of Religion and Culture, Central Tibetan Administration organised a prayer service today to mourn and express solidarity with the two Tibetans who have self-immolated in the last two months, and those undergoing immense suffering under China’s rule in Tibet. Dolma, a 31-year-old Tibetan nun, set herself on fire in protest against the More>>

  • China calls on Russia, central Asia allies to tighten Internet controls 18 Apr 2014 | 5:10 am

    By Roman Kozhevnikov DUSHANBE Fri Apr 18, 2014 12:39am IST (Reuters) – China on Thursday urged Russia and Central Asian partners in a six-nation security alliance to tighten control over the Internet and take other steps to prevent “external forces” from fomenting revolution in member states. Chinese Public Security Minister Guo Shengkun’s remarks at a More>>

  • Sikyong Speaks at Conference on Central Tibetan Administration’s International Efforts 18 Apr 2014 | 4:52 am

    DHARAMSHALA: The Tibet Policy Institute, a think-tank of the Central Tibetan Administration  (CTA) is organising a two-day conference on the CTA’s international efforts, to allow some of the leading exponents of its international relations, to discuss their activities. The conference will discuss how the exile Tibetan community managed to raise Tibet’s international visibility since His More>>

  • Love and affection source of happy world, His Holiness tells followers as he concludes Japan visit 17 Apr 2014 | 9:09 am

    TOKYO, Japan: His Holiness the Dalai Lama today gave a day-long teaching on Heart Sutra and 37 Practices of a Boddhisattva to thousands of devotees comprising Japanese, Mongolians, Chinese, and Koreans in Tokyo. His Holiness said all the religious traditions in the world, despite having different ideologies, have a common purpose of promoting positive human More>>

Image Showcase

We use cookies to improve our website and your experience when using it. Cookies used for the essential operation of the site have already been set. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

I accept cookies from this site.

EU Cookie Directive Module Information