We have a small number of authentic skull damarus, skullcups, and kangling which are virtually impossible to find anywhere else.
These were made by our artisan in Bhutan, himself an accomplished lama. He was taught this art directly by Dudjom Rinpoche, who admonished him to provide these sacred implements to practitioners. Today very few know or follow these old traditions.
Generally, bone available today in Nepal, India or China, is made from robbed graves of Muslims, or obtained in Hindu cremation grounds (non-Brahmin). In the case of China, they may be from various dubious sources (including Tibetan political prisoners).
The items below are made from skulls and thighbones of Buddhist practitioners of the Rokpa tribe, and obtained from skulls taken during the Chod sky burial ritual. This ethnic group of Bhutanese live in villages about 2 days walk from the end of the road, in far Eastern Butan, and these faithful are happy to receive the blessing of having their remains used by other Chodpas.
These are fabricated from one male and one female skull, as per tradition.
Male and female yidam mantras are hand lettered in gold on red background in the respective male and female skulls.
The skins are ’trin-pak’ goat skins, treated by burying with mineral salts and sacred herbs, according to the ancient terma tradition.
They are joined by wood and copper structures, and have a copper band with places for gems of your choosing.
Price for the male-female human kapala will be around $600.
NOTE: I have four ’regular’ skull damaru, with the usual painted skins, etc. but bone quality is very good and sound excellent ($250-$400).
Made from the same Buddhist bone source, there are a variety of factors and characteristics that make a kangling poor, good or excellent. Price is based on these characteristics, as well as the unique nature of our kangling.
Price: $350-$500 (see potalagate.com where inferior kangling are sold for $750!).
Every Vajrayana practitioner should have a skullcup. This is used in all initiations, inluding self-initiation and various other rituals and can also used as a food vessel.
These calvarium are similarly obtained from Buddhists. The quality (and thus price) of skullcups depends on their various signs and characteristics, as well as type of sutures, age of the deceased, size and so on.
Sometimes one can find ’old’ or antique skullcups. If these are authentic (and not ’fake aged’), unless one knows the purity of the practitioner, and what kinds of practices they were doing, a second-hand skullcup is not a good idea, as many negative and toxic energies can accumulate.
Skullcups that are carved on the outside are completely spurious. These are tourist items, usually created in Nepal and never used by practicing lamas, ngakpas or yogis. A skull lined with silver is acceptable, though in the past only a wealthy monastery, not a traveling yogi or yogini, could afford this. Other ornamentation, jewels, etc. are, again, an added embellishment that is avoided by the simple renuncient or practitioner.
Costs vary depending on the previous considerations, from $350 to $650.