prayer wheel

prayer wheel


: a round container that is filled with prayers written on paper and that turns on a tall pole

Full Definition of PRAYER WHEEL

:  a cylinder of wood or metal that revolves on an axis and contains written prayers and that is used in praying by Tibetan Buddhists

First Known Use of PRAYER WHEEL


prayer wheel

noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Tibetan prayer wheel, gilt silver, 18th–19th century; in the Seattle (Washington) Art Museum.—Courtesy of the Seattle Art Museum, Washington, Eugene Fuller Memorial Collection

In Tibetan Buddhism, a mechanical device used as an equivalent to the recitation of a mantra. The prayer wheel consists of a hollow metal cylinder, often beautifully embossed, mounted on a rod and containing a consecrated paper bearing a mantra. Each turn of the wheel by hand is considered equivalent to orally reciting the prayer. Variants to the handheld prayer wheel are large cylinders that can be set in motion by hand or attached to windmills or waterwheels and thus kept in continuous motion.


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