Tuesday, March 15, 2005
AN OROBUROS TRAIL
Craig needs suggestions for the mezzotint he will create for us to give to contributors.
I was thinking of Radha and Krishna playing baseball, or the little Krishna and his brother. Too hokey? too irreligious? Or we need to provide him with a proper dragon image from Manipur (not Chinese) to use with a baseball. Or what?
I think the dragon I based the Sha on was from California. It's an American dragon, not Chinese.
This is the logo on the letterhead right now. I made it up as a temp. Mike thinks the dragon looks unfriendly so we may change it when we have a graphics pro doing something decent for us.
The dragon is Chinesey but hails from California (a tattoo) but I added the horns as the Manipuri Sha has deer horns/antlers. One theory is that a local python swallowed a small brow-antlered or barking deer, horns and all, and then was found with the horns sticking out of him. Some lunch.
TO MIKE, CRAIG
These dragons were at the entrance to the king's living quarters.. (Mike - we threw those red baseballs around there, Les, Sudarshan and I, that time we walked into the fort?)
They were called sha. the word for dragon creature, also for beast, both in Manipuri and Tibetan. These were blown up by the British in 1891 after they defeated the Manipuris in the Battle of Khonjom. So they are not longer there. The photograph - which i have with me - is therefore from 1891 or earlier. I can show you sometime.
These look more like lions. I don't think they like baseball, whereas the Oro might like to play.
Here is a gnostic oroburos. I have also seen versions of in Manipur - the circle. There are variants in India and Thailand too.
The other is a Pakhangba (my ancestor actually, so I am not supposed to eat snakes, eels and snakelike things). It has become a state symbol. All the people on the field trip got one as a gift from Dave's father, who is in the government. I don't know who designed this and when.
I like the Oro and your ancestor (whom you greatly resemble). Craig wants to do a Narasimha with bat, but I don't think Manipur goes in for Narasimha. What do you think?
TO MIKE, CRAIG
You can find Narasimha on temple walls sometimes, as an avatar of Vishnu. But I agree, it does not connect very well with Manipur. Manipur is more about love, eros and Krishna and less about the more dramatic violence of Kali, Shiva or Narasimha. Some form of the dragon/sha kreecherthing might work better.
Maybe we can market First Pitch Oro-cookies?
TO MIKE, CRAIG
The first two are the most complex rep of the oroburos as Pakhangba. This belongs to the ruling Ningthouja Clan. Maybe not usable for religious reasons.
The funky dragon with the blue background is a mystery to me. I found it at a fair. The inscription in Bengali script not the archaic Meitei Mayek says something like Pakhangba Gatherer of Souls.
I love these. why have you been hiding them?
Your ancestor was a Dragon! Mine was only a goat.
I'll do something with the oroborus, which appeals to my celtic gnosticism. It will be a horned dragon eating its tail, but my version.
Posted by Trans at 10:45 PM