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tribaltextiles.info • View topic - Seeking information on a Dao (?) textile

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PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 10:57 am 
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Since antiquity the Chinese text itself has been considered to have spiritual and political power. For non- literate people living on the periphery of the Chinese empire, text was a symbol of both spiritual power (because Daoist texts were hand copied in Chinese characters and priests use writing as a means to communicate with the gods) and political power (as written characters were the lingua franca of those with political and economic power).

Since the "meaning" of the characters is non- existent when read together and many of them are not "characters" at all, I think we can assume a spiritual and decorative function.

Beautiful pieces!


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PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2012 9:49 am 
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Posts: 394
Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand
Thank you so much Iain for giving my piece a look and sharing your insight. And thank you, too Steven for your thoughts. They seem to indicate a similar use of language as here, with yantra cloths (mentioned on another thread about non-use of the mother tongue). I love the idea of written text imparting power when used on textiles. It also conveys mystery and gives power to the priest who uses it to communicate with the gods. It might be relevant to note here that of all the so-called hill tribes in Thailand, and this area, the Yao (Mien and Mun) are the only ones who use written text in their rituals. The others (Hmong, Akha, Lahu, Lisu, Karen and Lawa) are verbal in their communications with the gods; all do use music/percussion as well, as documented in 'Songs of Memory'.


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 Post subject: Further to character use
PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 3:14 pm 
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File comment: Character appearing in center of Susan's cloth. Associated with this character is another giving the meaning - fortunate protection.
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 4:57 pm 
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