Within a religion, there are many different symbols associated with that particular belief system. Some can be traditional, while others have been adapted throughout the years to represent a more modern grasp of the religion. In this article, we will take a look at some of the important symbols related to the Buddhist religion, including the endless knot and the parasol.
A traditional symbol for the Indian culture has always been the parasol or umbrella. It represents not only protection, but is also a sign for royalty. The umbrella is also seen as a status symbol, where it is looked high upon if you are able to protect yourself from what may fall from the sky, in terms of weather. On a religious level, the protection that the parasol or umbrella provides a person is also seen through the shielding from heat, suffering, as well as negative spiritual energy.
The Endless Knot
The endless knot is comprised of a series of intertwined lines, in right-angled positions. When viewing this symbol, you will find that there seems to be no start, as well as no end to it. This corresponds to the belief that Buddha possesses a neverending wisdom and sense of compassion. Associated with this symbol, the view that ones existence is continuous is represented.
Comprised of two fish, this symbol is often encountered in the vertical position, where the heads face one another in the inward direction. This symbol can be traced back to the ancient history of the religion, before Buddhism was even an established religion. It is said to originate from two main, religious rivers in India, which are called the Ganga and the Yamuna. The rivers themselves are also seen as symbols, representing lunar and solar associations. In the Buddhist culture, the golden fishes are a symbol of happiness. This is because of the freedom they possess while swimming in the water. They are also connected to fertility, abundance, as well as fidelity. It is believed that when one dreams of a fish, someone close to them will be having a baby soon. In the Chinese culture, a pair of fish is often given as a wedding present to symbolize a strong bond between newlyweds because fish seen to always swim in pairs.
The conch shell is often associated with the strength and triumph of a hero, who can be found within the ancient Indian tales. Descriptions of heroes carrying a while conch shell can be found throughout various texts. Various conch shells possess different names and also serve as one of the main associations with Vishnu. The name of his conch shell is Panchajanya, which refers to the control possessed over all beings. Depending on the Tibetan Buddhist sect, the conch is often used to call a start at religious meetings. When performing various rituals, it can be used as a musical instrument, as well as a vessel for holy water.
When it comes to the conch shell, it can be seen in many different ways. There are male and female conch shells. A thicker shell can identify the male version, while the female conch shell is slender and thin. The conch shell is also used to represent the different caste divisions. A smooth white conch shell refers to the Brahmin caste, where priests are categorized. A red conch is connected to the warriors, who are also called the kshatriyas. The yellow conch represents merchants. They are also known as the vaishyas. The gray conch is used for those considered laborers, which are also called shudras.