AGE: – A few years old
CONSTRUCTION: – Wood, glass mosaic, gilded
DESCRIPTION: – Burmese Gilded Wood Carving Nat Elephant
HEIGHT: – 91cm
WIDTH: – 53cm
WEIGHT: – 4.9 Kg.
Burmese Gilded Wood Carving Nat Elephant – prominent in Burmese folklore and legend. Elephants are depicted in several myths and stories related to The Buddha. In Buddhism the elephant is the symbol of mental strength. In India, the Ganesha, revered by both Hindu’s and Buddhist’s is seen in statues and paintings with the head of an elephant and the body of a human. The Buddhist believe that in the last incarnation of the Buddha’s descent from Trayastrimsa Heaven, he entered into his mother’s womb in the form of a white elephant.
The elephant is also one of the eight animals in the Myanmar zodiac and are particularly revered by the people of Myanmar, especially the white elephant which is considered to be a good omen for the past Kings of Myanmar. A king owning a white elephant believed that he would be a great king and that it would bring good luck and prosperity as well as peace and harmony to his people.
In Yangon today there are three white elephants at Mindama hill near Kyauktawgyi Pagoda in Yangon. The people of Burma revere these elephants, they are thought to bring good luck and are used on ceremonial occasions.
In this particular carving the Nat is a Deva nat, which is the highest ranking of all 37 nats, there are many more nats but most of the legends and myths are related to the 37 main nats.