Each symbol on its own is representative of an element of Buddhist teaching from the eightfold path. Such symbolism is holistically represented in the classic Buddhist image (and the eighth auspicious object) of the eight spoked wheel. When each of the eight auspicious objects are depicted together, they offer both teaching and wisdom to those who are willing to receive.
Here are the eight auspicious objects:
- Parasol/Chattra/Canopy: an umbrella used for protection from the sun. The parasol was a traditional symbol of wealth and majesty in ancient India, its symbolism has come to be associated with its function as protective shader from harmful and detracting forces. In feng shui the parasol is specifically representative of prevention from negative energy in business, ensuring one’s satisfaction with their career and employment aspirations.
- Golden Fish/Suvarnamatsya: a pair of golden fish is a classic symbol in Asia for harmony, joy, fertility and wealth. Because these fish always swim in pairs they are a classic wedding gift in feng shui, they are also used to stimulate wealth areas of the home for ensuring financial security.
- Treasure Vase/Kalasha: a symbol of wealth and long-lived prosperity. The treasure vase is an ancient symbol of undying fortune. In legend it is a vessel never emptied and always enduring. In feng shui it is a benefactor of long life and good fortune.
- Lotus/Padma: this beautiful flower is an ancient symbol of the blossoming of a mind from darkness to enlightenment. The lotus plant rises from the mud of materialism, shoots through the water, representative of experience, and unfolds in the brilliant sunlight of enlightenment. In feng shui the lotus invites luck in love, social relationships and overall joy and happiness.
- Conch Shell/Sankha: the conch shell was both the calling trumpet of ancient India for warding off evil spirits and preventing disaster and a holy horn for call to prayer and worship in Tibet. The conch shell is a traditional symbol of strength and sovereignty. In feng shui it is a symbol used for increasing international networks in business and trade with its strong call. When placed in the South, the conch shell benefacts reputation luck.
- Endless Knot/Shrivasta: the endless knot is representative of the buddhist understanding of the cycle of life. It is the symbol of a smooth journey through life and relationships free of jarring misfortune and distress. Endless knots are also given as wedding gifts for this reason. In feng shui the endless knot is an unsurpassed symbol of the period 8, or the current celestial time period we are in lasting until 2024. It is also a great protector of those who are travelling and embarking on long journeys and wish for added protection.
- Victory Banner/Dhvaja: this flag or standard was traditionally carried by Indian soldiers in times of war and then came to powerfully represent the Buddha’s victory over Mara or evil in his pursuit of enlightenment. In feng shui this flag is representative of success in overcoming great obstacles and adversity and is also a larger symbol of the total domination of dark forces by the ultimate clearing energy of enlightenment.
- Wheel/dharmachakra: as mentioned earlier, the wheel is a symbol for the entire eightfold path and the teachings of Buddhism but its specific parts also have further meaning. The rim is an image of limitation and the hub represents the centering axis of the earth. In feng shui the wheel is symbolic of man’s triumph over the shortcomings of humanity: greed, anger and ignorance. The wheel is a vehicle to greater understanding, intelligence and spiritual realizations.