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To Enter the Worlds of the Air

Dream Warrior Bow Guard Wrap View

The spirits of the air are often invisible: They dwell in worlds where it is not given to us to walk. We know they are there, as surely as we feel the warmth of the sun on our faces, see the light of moon and stars upon our path, feel the touch of the winds upon our skin. But of the worlds themselves we are afforded only the briefest of glimpses, and even those not always as part of the tangible world of our everyday lives.

For most, it is possible to enter any of the worlds where the spirits dwell only upon departing this plane of existence — and even then, such access is often rare. It’s reflected in the old stories, accounts that sometimes tell of a man or woman granted access the the sky worlds, there to dwell with more powerful beings, yet most often we are promised entrée to some other world when we walk on, one filled with the spirits of our human ancestors and peers, but often not with those more powerful and elemental spirits.

There is one exception.

We are sometimes, even while we remain among the living, granted access to the worlds beyond the winds by way of visions and dreams.

In our way, such access is a gift, one not to be denied, but also not one to be treated lightly. When a vision is granted or a message delivered by way of a dream, great responsibility most often comes with it. Such dreams may be gifts of healing, or of teaching; of prophecy, or of warning. Nearly always, they require sacrifice, often to a great degree. In some cultures, young warriors and would-be warriors go out into the wild lands to seek a vision for their lives and destiny; And sometimes, the war is fought in the dream world itself, an omen of things to come.

Today’s featured work fits both circumstances. From its description in the Accessories Gallery here on the site:

Dream Warrior Bow Guard

Some of our fiercest battles are fought in and over dreams. Wings invokes the dream warrior and and the warrior’s art in this old traditional-style bow guard. It begins with a solitary concha from one of his old belts, a piece that has spent decades in his private collection: multiple layers of solid, heavy sterling silver hand-cut into ovals of ascending size, the base layer scalloped gracefully around its edge, all stacked atop each other in an overlay pattern. Each layer is edged with hand-stamped chased images in traditional designs — the force of the lightning, the shelter of the lodge, the power of the rising sun. The center oval is domed, repoussé-fashion, and the entire finished concha is domed yet again to trace the line of the wrist. A small sturdy column of sterling silver arises from its center to hold the bezel of the central stone securely in place. The stone itself is an extraordinary giant cabochon of high-grade Cloud Mountain turquoise from China’s Hubei District, bright teal blue and webbed in inky indigo as tightly and thoroughly as Grandmother Spider’s dreamcatcher, set into a saw-toothed bezel and trimmed with bold twisted silver. Flanking the center concha are a pair of tiny round conchas whose stampwork repeat the lodge motif around diminutive round blue-green center stones. The conchas are screwed into a band of warm golden-hued moosehide, thick, sturdy and velvety to the touch. The band extends outward three inches beyond each small concha to allow for custom cutting and lacing to fit the wearer. In its current from, prior to sizing to suit, the full band extends 11.25″ long by 2.25″ high; the small conchas are 2-7/8″ across and their cabochons are 1/4″ across; the center concha is 3/5/8″ high by 2.75″ across, and the focal cabochon is 2″ high by 1-3/8″ across at the widest point (dimensions approximate). Other views shown at the link.

Sterling silver; high-grade Cloud Mountain turquoise; old blue-green turquoise; moosehide
$2,500 + shipping, handling, and insurance


In our way, warriors can be dreamers and dreamers can become warriors: those who scout the worlds beyond this one, who return with what we might properly call intelligence, in both senses of the word.

It is a journey that requires a  strong heart and a courageous spirit. It may not require so much to enter the worlds of the air, the worlds of visions and dreams . . . but only the brave return with their gifts.

~ Aji








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