Parasol in India

Wed Nov 17 22:54:39 UTC 1999

N. Ganesan wrote:

> 1)   Do the Pali and Mahayana works describe the royal umbrella?
> What about Jain texts? Hemacandra?
> 2) Is this royal parasol common in Iranian and IE myths?

There is a small book called "Buddhist Symbols in Tibetan Culture" by
Dagyab Rinpoche (Wisdom Pubns) which describes the parasol which is
one of the eight auspicious symbols (a.s.ta-ma`ngala).  The author
bases his explanations on native Tibetan material and some Indic
derived works.  What he says in summary is|:
They are large, big enough for 4 or 5 people to stand underneath, are
made of yellow, white or multicoloured silk strectched over wooden
spokes.  They also have a broad pleated silk valance.  The top is
formed by a golden pommel which may be of any shape or height, the
staff is also wood, sometimes gilded but usually painted red.  In
Tibet, high religious dignitaries used ones of silk and secular rulers
used ones emroidered with peacock feathers.   Symbolically, it
signifies spiritual power.

Hope this helps.

Best wishes,

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