The significance of amber in Asia
FAMOUS CULTURAL OBJECTS
Amber jewelry and art
In Southeast Asian countries such as Malaysia, China, Vietnam and Thailand, amber is a valuable material that is used to create a variety of products. Amber jewelry such as bracelets, necklaces and earrings are popular among locals and tourists.
For example, China, with its rich history of using amber, creates unique sculptures, figurines and amulets from this precious stone. Amber beads also have special meaning and can be used in spiritual practices. Vietnam and Thailand also produce a variety of amber products, including bracelets and necklaces. Amber with inclusions, such as insects or plant remains, is of interest to collectors.
Amber products with the dragon image
The dragon is considered one of the most important symbols in Chinese culture. It is associated with power, strength, luck and long life. In Chinese art and architecture you can see images of dragons in the form of sculptures, murals and other decorative elements. Jewelry, sculptures or other items made of amber with their images are common. A dragon on an amber item can give it additional spiritual and symbolic meaning.
Amber in China is part of a rich cultural tradition and continues to be an important element of Chinese arts and crafts. It is used for inlaying furniture, furnishings and various artistic products. It is suitable for creating unique patterns and decorative elements.
Legends, Myths, and Stories about Amber
The Soul of the Tiger
The Soul of the Tiger
As the color of amber in China was associated with the color of a tiger’s eyes, it was given the name ‘Huso’ (‘soul of the tiger’). The Chinese believed that after the death of a predator, its soul would enter the earth and transform into amber.
There was another belief that within the amber stone resides the ‘Spirit of Amber’ in the form of a benevolent old man. Dressed in brown garments amidst dense misty clouds, he serves as a protective presence for those who wear amber jewelry.
“Amber is a stone that can help overcome fear and attract confidence and wisdom to oneself.” – Jayadev.
In Asia, the beauty of amber, along with its healing and magical properties, has always been highly valued. It was considered a sacred stone that provided protection against accidents and was used in Ayurvedic medicine to treat various ailments. It is believed to stabilize strong aura fluctuations and calm nervous individuals. Amber is said to protect its owner from evil spirits and bring them luck and success.
If you wish to gift someone tranquility, wisdom, and joy, presenting them with amber jewelry is a suitable choice.
“Amber is not just a beautiful stone; it is also healing. It can help alleviate ailments and attract health and vitality to oneself.” – Bodhidharma.
Amber was also highly regarded in Japan, the land of the rising sun. In this culture, amber was valued for its unique beauty and properties.
There is a legend of the ‘Sun Fragments,’ which tells of ancient times before the existence of humans. When there were two suns in the sky, they collided (or one sun exploded), and the fragments of sunlight fell to the earth, solidified, and transformed into amber. Since then, amber has become a symbol of solar energy and light in Japanese culture.
“Amber is a stone that helps to rid oneself of negative energy and attract positivity and light.” – Patanjali.
In Hindu mythology, amber was considered a symbol of Surya (the sun) and was associated with spiritual enlightenment and purity.
Amber is not actually related to gold in terms of color or properties. However, in India, the term “blue gold” is sometimes used to translate the name of amber. This is because in ancient times in India, “gold” was a term used to describe precious stones and other materials of high value. Amber, being a precious gemstone, held the same value as gold and was referred to as “blue gold” due to its transparency and light-reflecting properties.
“Amber is a stone that helps cleanse the mind and body. It has the ability to transform negative energy into positive, which makes it special and valuable.” – Zhuangzi.
Members of the imperial families in China and Japan wore amber of a cherry hue, considering it as ‘dragon’s blood.’ Like yellow amber, this type is highly revered in China and is seen as symbols of wealth, power, and magnificence. As a result, amber could often be found on the attire of emperors.
To this day, Asia is home to numerous beautiful and valuable amber artifacts that have survived from ancient times.
“Amber is a stone that possesses protective properties and aids in maintaining health and well-being.” – Vedanta.
The Sun Stone
The Sun Stone
In China, for example, amber was regarded as the ‘Stone of the Sun,’ believed to possess protective properties against evil spirits and bring good luck.
There is a legend that ancient Chinese believed amber was created from the rays of the sun, which fell to the earth and solidified into the stone. Chinese emperors also used amber to create jewelry and other luxurious items.
“Amber is a stone that has the property of reflecting warmth and light, making it unique and beautiful. It is a symbol of the sun and brings good fortune to those who wear it.” – Lao Tzu.
Created from Sunlight
Created from Sunlight
In Tibet, amber holds spiritual and symbolic significance. There are several legends and myths associated with it:
– According to myth, amber is a stone that connects humans with celestial realms and worlds. It helps us overcome earthly barriers and achieve higher states of consciousness.
– In Tibetan astrology, amber is associated with the planet Jupiter. It is considered a beneficial planet that brings luck, prosperity, and harmony.
– According to myth, amber was created from sunlight. It brings light and warmth into our lives and is seen as a symbol of eternal life and spiritual enlightenment.
“Amber is a stone that allows us to gain clarity of thought and wisdom, and it helps us overcome obstacles and achieve our goals.” – Tibetan sage.
Amber held great significance in Japanese culture, and the Japanese highly valued this precious stone for its unique properties and beauty. Amber, which was imported from Myanmar (formerly Burma), became popular in Japan during the 8th and 9th centuries and became known as ‘yuki-toki’ (雪融) in Japanese. In translation, it means ‘melting snow’ because amber appeared to glow and shimmer like snow on a clear day.
“Amber has the ability to retain warmth and light, making it special and unique. It can help attract prosperity and happiness to oneself.” – Huang Tzu.
Amber in modern Asia
Despite the passage of ancient times, the interest in the sun stone remains strong and continues to grow with each passing year.
Amber still holds great significance in Asian culture, and people continue to use it for creating jewelry, spiritual and medicinal purposes, as well as considering it a symbol of luck and prosperity