There are basically two types of Tibetan Buddhist Prayer Flag:Vertical and Horizontal. There is a specific meaning to each of the prayer flags.
Vertical Prayer Flag: This is also known as Darchor Flag which means Flagstaff. These are rectangular cloths attached to poles in vertic
Horizontal Prayer Flag: This is known as Lung Ta prayer flag which means Wind-Horse prayer flag. These are rectangular or square cloth connected along their top edges to a long thread. They are been hung in a diagonal line between two objects. Almost 400 mantras surround this flag.
There is the cultural and traditional significance of these prayer flags. Let’s consider various aspects concerned with the prayer flags.
Colours: The prayer flags come in a set of five colours which are arranged from the left to the right. The colours represent the five elements with five pure lights. These five colours come in a specific order: Blue, White, Red, Green and Yellow. Each colour has a meaning in the flag. Blue signifies Sky; White colour as Air and Wind, Red colour signifies fire, Green signifies water and Yellow colour as Earth.
Mantras: The player flags, also refered to as Tibetan Mantra prayer flag, contain mantras, symbols and prayers all of which have symbolical meanings. The Horse is believed to be as fast as the wind carrying with three flaming jewels which indicates the three cornerstones of Tibetan tradition namely: Buddha, The Dharma and The Sanga.
Mantras in the prayer flag include the three greatest Buddhist Bodhisattvas: Padmasambhava, Avalokitesvara and Manjushree.
Aspiration of Prayer Flag: A common misconception about the prayer flag is that it carries prayers to GOD. But that is not the reason behind the flag. The true belief is that the prayers or mantras are carried by the wind to spread goodwill and compassion benefitting everyone. The flag should never be kept on the ground as it shows a sign of disrespect to the culture.
Best Time: There is a particular time to hang a prayer flag. The most preferred time is to put it up early in the morning or on windy days. It is believed that as the images fade away a new life replaces the old one. The flags are mostly changed annually during the Tibetan New year. There is a belief that old prayer flags should be burnt once it is taken off and this is often seen in practice. Also hanging the flags during an inauspicious time may bring misfortune.
According to the Buddhist, the Tibetan word for the prayer fag is Dar Cho. This word specializes a meaning for the Tibetan prayer flag. ‘Dar’ signifies increase wealth, life, fortune and health whereas ‘Cho’ means all sentient beings. In simple terms, prayer flags are coupled with natural energy of wind that increases the happiness and good wills in living being
You don’t have to be a Buddhist to hang up a prayer flag, but you should know the right ways to hang the flag and respect the culture associated with it. Prayer flags are an integral part of Tibetan culture, check out the prayer flags on our website and get yours today.