Tibetan Buddhist Kartika Tantric Ritual Knife
Brass kartika, a ceremonial Tantric knife used by dakinis to symbolically sever attachment to the bodily form.
These are traditional Tibetan ritual objects that represent the wisdom aspect of the path to Enlightenment.
The kartika is associated with Vajrayogini who holds the kartika knife in her right hand and the skull cup in her left, representing the inseparable union of wisdom and skillful means.
The top of the knife handle is one half of a Vajra, or Dorje, the diamond thunderbolt that cuts through anything, including ignorance, without itself being destroyed or diminished.
The iron blade is unsharpened. It is attached to the vajra handle with the jaws of a makura, a mythical creature half elephant, half crocodile.
The last photo shows Vajrayogini wielding a kartika. The photo was taken in Patan, Nepal.
Approx sizes: large 38 x 8cm at widest point, small 18 x 17cm