Saturday, May 08, 2010

Terbum: Tibetan Earth Treasure Vases

We are spilling oil in the waters, mining the hills like there was no tomorrow, and eating up the wilderness for tract homes. Time to do something nice for the earth, would you not agree? Without further ado, we will bury an earth vase, and encourage everyone we know to do the same.

The first task is to select an earth vase.  Earth vases, or earth treasure vases that you bury, are different from treasure vases kept on altars. These are available from several different sources, so without hurting anyone's feelings, or leaving anyone out, I recommend you use Google to find an earth vase (also check "peace vase") that works for you. You see the one I like in the above photo, but in the interests of fairness I am not naming names.

Everybody has their own way of doing things, and this just happens to be the system I like. Go down to the nursery, and purchase a terra cotta flower pot and the dish that goes under said pot. Make sure the dish will fit snugly in the top of the pot.

In the photo above, you see the fixings. I get juniper from the largest juniper tree I can find in the vicinity of where the vase will be buried. Depending on the circumstances, I may also get various substances like naga medicines, precious incense, and so forth. This is a nice touch but not absolutely critical.

As indicated by these photos, you completely surround the vase with juniper, filling up the flower pot in the process.

You then seal the dish to the top of the pot, and also plug up the hole in the bottom of the pot. You can use caulk or some such thing without worrying too much. The objective is to make relatively waterproof seals. You can also become obsessed and make what you consider absolutely waterproof seals, but since nothing is permanent, I don't know how far that will sustain any sort of mental health.

Well, you can see we went with the caulk and some gaffer's tape. You can stop here, or if you wish, you can now encase the entire thing in yellow silk brocade and tie it with multicolored ribbon. I don't know that the situation demands this, but if it is in accord with your relationship to the sacred, do what feels necessary at the time.

Our next step involves the actual labor of digging a hole to bury the vase, so I will omit photos in order to spare the sensitive. 

Many people worry about where to put these vases. Usually, you want to put them where people will not walk over them, but I have seen that rule violated more times than I have seen it observed. Nevertheless, I always put them where people will not walk over them. 

There is actually a considerable body of doctrine related to this subject, but it is case specific, so this is one of those "ask your lama" situations.  Typically, the vases are buried proximate to religious structures, water sources, vigorous trees, special geological features, high peaks, green valleys, and so forth.

Generally speaking, the blessings from these vases extend for about fifteen miles in every direction, so you want to take that into account. 

You want to put them anywhere from three to six feet down, so that is another consideration. 

Usually, people will try to put them in the center of a contiguous area, regardless of property lines. You can also bury them in the center of your property, if you own property, or near some particularly auspicious feature of a property. You do want to be generous, so keep everyone's benefit in mind.

Sometimes, spirits will come to you in dreams, visions, or in seeming actuality, so you can bury these vases where you see the spirits standing.

Another good way is to do a mo, and if you get a Falcon (one remaining bead) then pick up any stick you find right where you are. Bless the stick with mantras, and then throw it in a lucky direction. Where the stick lands is where you dig. If you don't get a Falcon, you can move to another spot and try again.

Again, I would recommend you use Google to find all of the resources, study these, and then set out with vase, shovel, and confidence.

Keywords: treasure vase, peace vase, earth vase, earth treasure vase, Tibetan, terbum

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2 reader comments:

Patricia Snodgrass said...

I am slightly confused. Are you using the clay pot as a treasure vase or do you put the treasure vase inside the clay pot? Also, do you have to purchase a treasure vase or can you make one?
thank you.

TENPA said...

You put the treasure vase inside the clay pot, cushioned and surrounded by the juniper, as shown in the photos. It is best to get the vase from someone who specializes in treasure vases, but if you have the lineage and associated empowerments to make them, and if you can clearly and confidently generate the deities and so forth you can make one. If you search around on YouTube for Earth Treasure Vase, you can see a short film on how they are made and who makes them, etc.