I went to a small privately-owned museum in my town today. This is a unique museum in that the artworks it holds were collected from all ages and around the world – something rarely seen in a private museum in my homeland. There are only a few items from each era and area, and some say it is too haphazardly and chaotic, but the founder collected most of them by himself, wanting to bring back home a little bit of everything beautiful he found abroad to share with his people. I took an instant liking to him and his collection!
This time around, the exhibit was on chinaware from 11th to 14th centuries, when it saw some drastic advancement in its art form. Different methods of molding and shaping, etching, painting and glazing, and firing were developed for one-and-only pieces as well as for mass-production. Many were for use by its own people, but some traveled far along the Silk Road to be enjoyed by numerous Islamic societies.
There were only about fifty items to see, so I got to study each closely. Three in particular I observed keenly, because I have never seen them before – porcelain pillows. I am not sure how comfortable they are as pillows, but apparently, in the olden days in China they were much appreciated in summertime because of their cool texture, so they were at least practical!
They were also favoured because it was believed they brought about sweet dreams, by decorating them with paintings and etchings of fortunate patterns. For example,
This is a porcelain pillow with hibiscus flowers etched on the top… but the flowers are not the fortunate pattern.
Can you see the little round etchings around the flowers? They are called pearl patterns, and because pearls were precious jewels back then, they are the fortunate pattern.
This is a porcelain pillow with flowers and birds etched all around… but, once again, they are not the fortunate patterns. Have you noticed its interesting shape? It is in the shape of the head of sticks held by high-ranked monks, sticks said to have powers to fulfill wishes. So the shape of the pillow is the fortunate pattern.
And this is a porcelain pillow with etched flowers and coloured glazes…but, you guessed it, they are not the fortunate patterns.
The etched writing in the middle is a poem to bring about sweet dreams (sorry, I have no idea what it says… can anybody help me with it?). So it is the writing that is the fortunate pattern.
I hear that quite a few of my people affected by the big earthquakes which hit mid-April are still having nightmares about roofs crashing down on them. I thought they could use some pillows that would instead bring about sweet dreams for them.
So, maybe this week, you can join me in sending sweet dream-catching pillows to my people?
Just as with other previous get well messages which started with sending flower power, you do not have to do anything special or extraordinary. Only that, if you have comfy and/or practical pillows which have proven to bring you sweet dreams, you would kindly share it with my people.
Maybe you can take a snapshot of your sweet dream-catching pillow and post it on your site?
And maybe you can let me know by leaving a comment?
Once again, you need not go out of your way at all. You only need to go to your bedroom, or sofa, or wherever you take a nap, and tell me what works best for you when you want to have a good night’s sleep.
Thank you to everyone who visits here to read through my post(s). Having you here is always a sweet dream come true for me! And if you come here before you go to bed, I hope my scribbles do not disturb your gentle slumber… there are no fortunate patterns here, nevertheless, I wish you all sweet dreams tonight and every night!