Art Journal, The Met

Chakra or Quoit

Project details

Chakra or Quoit ('Khor Lo)

Purchase, Arthur Ochs Sulzberger Gift, 2003 from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Open Access Collection | CC0

Accession: 2003.467

Category

Art Journal, The Met

This iron ring is a Tibetan Chakra, created sometime within the 15th-18th centuries. It was acquired by The Metropolitan Museum of Art in 2003 and is part of their open access collection.

- Chakra or Quoit ('Khor Lo), possibly 15th–18th century, Tibetan.

Art Journal - March 30, 2020

I’ve been writing about my friend Sarah, and her business Greenheart Yoga, as she begins a new phase of teaching online. Greenheart is a reference to the fourth Chakra, the heart. It is known as the Anahata, meaning unhurt and unbeaten. It is associated with the color green, symbolizing health and abundance. I think in a time that requires transformation, you couldn’t find better words for motivation and positive association!

 

Known as a symbolic weapon or divine attribute, a Chakra ring is used for ceremonial purposes. This photograph disguises the scale – it is only a little more than five inches in diameter.

 

The surface is engraved with a Tibetan poem, translated to:

 

There is a lake in Rinchen Margang / In which very beautiful lotuses bloom / The face of the lake is smooth as mirror and shines / In it the sun reflects with golden rays / Seeing that gives endless satisfaction to someone with the eye of wisdom / But for one whose eyes are blind to knowledge, it is not like that.

 

The poem was translated by Donald LaRocca in Warriors of the Himalayas: Rediscovering the Arms and Armor of Tibet, published by The Met in 2006. This is the first in depth examination of Tibetan armor and weapons dating from the 13th -20th century.

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- Rachel Wright, Culture Advocate & Entrepreneur
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