Looking at the image:

Oh, I should have got one!!

A really nice set, dorje and bell, finely cast bronze, adorned with intricate and meaningful designs…

BritishMuseum AN00250258_001_l

In Kathmandu…. they had them everywhere, in the countless street vendor stalls around the temples and in the gift shops of the touristy Thamel district.

Buddhists use them in prayer:

 Bells & Dorje

  • The Bell symbolizes feminine principle, the wisdom of emptiness.
  • The Dorje/Vajra, symbolizes the masculine principle (mind which is compassion). Compassion is expressed through skillful means.

Union of two principles brings about enlightened mind.


  •  bells clear mind from clouds of negative thoughts, creating calmness causing relaxation and a peaceful feeling.
  • Sacred sound has the unique ability to heal the divisions, while clearing away mental chatter.

Method of Use:

Bells and Dorje are easy to use.

  • Hold  Dorje gently in a vertical position in the right hand, close to the heart
  • Hold the  Bell in the left hand.
  • Strike them against each other, twice or thrice
  • Pause for 30 seconds while they resonate.
  • Do this to open and close meditation, yoga or study session.

When played,  Bells and Tingshas produce deep relaxation, quiet the nerves and for stress management.

Traditional Value

Traditionally these are used by many spiritual traditions throughout the East. Bells represents wisdom and the feminine aspect of the divine while the dorje represents the creative and forceful male energy. During ceremonies and rituals the bell is held in the left hand while the stick is in your right hand. As the sound of the bell resonates the bell and stick balance the negative with the positive to harmonize ones life and surroundings.


In our shamanic group everyone bought at least one set – everyone but me.

I am not a “spiritual shopper”

I am not a Buddhist and am not planning to ever pray with them like oa Buddhist or Tantrika either.

THAT’S why I did not get one – back in Nepal…….

Then why do I NOW feel I should have?

I read a lot

I understand a lot more now, about Buddhist worship, about Bön, about the Spirit, that manifests here, in my trance journeys and wishes me to follow him……

He has a gabrummmmsudle of spiritual weapons in his countless hands, a bell and a dorje among them…..

… the only ones I actually recognize……

But I am firmly anchored in the shamanic ways of my Sibrian ancestors and my animal Spirits……

I HAVE a brass bell, from my sister.

Its shape is “different” It is old, tarnished. It was with her samovar, her smudging censor and charcoal….. She used it in worship.

Like my Ada.

He had a large staff with a large bell on it – and blue and white silk streamers and Magpie feathers…..

He shamanized with that.

That and Vodka, Milk and Tea…

And Artish, for “smudging” Juniper twigs and ground Juniper berries, cedar twigs and herbs according to need…..

I wish I also had Ada’s bell….

Painting the card….

…..the red and blue hearts are for him and for Mausi!





11 thoughts on “Bells:

  1. I have bells too, lots of them, different ones, from a brass lady with a big skirt and typical bells to the crotal bells lost from animals and horsed, then found again by eager metal detectorists and of course, lots of tiger bells of all sizes. Bells seem to have been an important spiritual aspect of many cultures it seems.

      • I have a antique Chinese brass one that I can send you. It’s part of my All Souls Procession costume, hanging from the back of my shaman’s belt of little iron bells. For years I’ve wanted to cast my own bells but have always preferred forging to wax carving. Now that I can’t do much forging, and we’ve discovered a fun way to melt metal with solar energy, maybe it’s time to make some cast bronze tiger and jaguar bells.

      • Hi ironwing! ♥
        Whouw, what a wonderful offer!
        But iffff you send it up here, would not your costume be incomplete?
        By the way, I would love to see a picture of that regalia/ costume!
        I usually put small bells onto my snudging fans and also have a few on my personal Medicine pouch…..
        Oh yes, the pouch I made for the Ironwing deck also has a bell!

  2. Hello Mi-Shell, Millie-Crow 🙂

    You know, in the last post I commented on, where you actually asked for feedback (sort of :-)) re colouring in A’HA, i said that A’HA was not prescriptive and people are free to use them in any way, colour or form, but I, personally, enjoy the B&W ones B&W.
    That remains true, but i wanted to note that the bell, coloured in in that brassy-bronzey way, reminds me of a sweet-sounding bell I bought in a market very similar to the Kathmandu ones, but in Ladakh. There were many of the Prayer Bell/dorje sets, but just one of this item… I loved it, but gave it to my sister who also loved bells. She is now passed, and I wonder where that little bell has roamed… It had such a sweet voice… clear as a … dare I sa it… a bell! 🙂

    The one in the drawing is a real bell… a silver-plated child’s bell presented at birth for good fortune, believe. It has lost its sound-maker, so I have attached a small crystal bead in its place… the sound of that one is very sweet, too, and I can feel the crystal and the silver energy working their magic in a space. 🙂

  3. Hi Mi-Shell,
    Here’s the bell belt, on a rather worn Guatemalan sash. The bells are forged from triangles, with triangular cone-bell clappers. The belt is so worn that I plan to put the bells on something else, probably an iron chain with one of my big triple bells.

    The tiger bell is strung with a little bronze tiger charm:

    Here’s my Flickr set of All Souls Procession photos, including my masks and costumes (the costume from 2009, with the copper jaguar mask, has the best view of the belt).

    I spent last year making this coat which pretty much replaces the belt and other costumes:

    Anyway, I’d be happy to send you the tiger bell if you want it. It might inspire me to make some tiger bells of my own.


    • Hi Lorena!
      I am just recovering from the “rush I got, just loooooking at the links you send!
      What a wonderful coat! What a piece of ART!
      And the All Souls procession outfits are magnificent!
      I am in Ahw!
      Thank you soooo much for sharing!
      I wonder, what peter will say; he loves your art!

      I would love to “adopt” the Tiger Bell and would reciprocate with a treasure I made! – Let me know, ifff you have your eyes on something on our web site – – or maybe something more personal, that we could make for you!
      For this discussion I feel e-mail is a bit more private….
      ours is
      … Now I will continue “gawking” at all the pictures…….
      and admire!
      Loving Blessings!

    • Oh! how nice to see this conversation revived!
      Almost a year has gone by.
      I waited, ifff Lorena, you would get a chance to send the little bell… and then “life happened” and…. I forgot about it….
      Blessings to all you guys! ♥

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