In Buddhist tradition, cotton thread was been blessed in advance by a Buddhist monk and is known as ‘sai sin‘. The sai sin was supposed to provide protection and good health to the person wearing it. The color of the thread may represent different meanings, but most importantly represents purity - other colors were used depending on the region you were in and the circumstances surrounding you. But the sacred thread isn’t just worn on the wrist.
The thread may be strung around a person’s fingers or it can be looped around their head. The important thing is that the thread links everybody to the monks and Buddha. The chanting of the monks and the associated merit is then symbolically passed along the thread reaching all of the people in the congregation.
Sai sin is the unspun thread which is rolled up in oval shaped ball used by monks. The sai sin ball is placed in front of the alter tables and is used to mark the ceremonial perimeter by taking the ball out through a window and then circling the building. The ball is returned to the altar and the head monk will hold the ball during the ceremony.
During the chanting, he will unroll the sai sin and passes the thread through his fingers before passing the ball to the next monk. Each monk will hold a piece of the thread and pass the ball until it reaches the last monk. The connection between the monks and the thread is thought to form a sacrosanct circle as the monks chanting infuses the thread with sacred power. It is believed that anyone who is within the circle will be blessed and protected from harm and evil.
Sai Sin has been used by monks for a number of purposes
- For places you wish upon good luck, such as housewarmings and house blessings
- Tied to someone's write to ward off evil spirits
- For visitors and tourists to be wished a safe journey and good health
- A welcome gesture
- To wish happiness and prosperity to newly weds as a wedding guest
Materials: Zinc Alloy, Metal & Cotton
Length: 6.5in / 16.5cm (Stretchable)