Metal and Stone Vestiges
Religion, Magic and Protection in the Art of Ancient Tibet
The two lower specimens are popular khyung thokchas, dating to the early Buddhist period. Horns aside, their general form is reflected in rock art raptors. The probable pre-Buddhist upper specimen, with its pyramidal head and abstract aspect, somewhat resembles the dark red raptor pictograph (6c). Despite exhibiting far fewer details than the khyung thokchas, this amulet has a strong and vibrant outline, a defining trait of analogous Upper Tibetan rock art motifs as well.
all text & images © John Vincent Bellezza