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One common form of the Endless Knot
More decorative
More complex form seen on ca. 400-year-old Chinese lacquerware dish.

The endless knot or eternal knot (Sanskrit: śrīvatsa; Tibetan དཔལ་བེའུ། dpal be'u; Mongolian Ulzii) is a symbolic knot and one of the Eight Auspicious Symbols. It is an important cultural marker in places significantly influenced by Tibetan Buddhism such as Tibet, Mongolia, Tuva, Kalmykia, and Buryatia. It is also sometimes found in Chinese art and used in Chinese knots.



The endless knot symbol appears on clay tablets from the Indus Valley Civilization (2500 BC),[1] and the same symbol also appears on an historic era inscription.[2]


The endless knot has been described as "an ancient symbol representing the interweaving of the Spiritual path, the flowing of Time and Movement within That Which is Eternal. All existence, it says, is bound by time and change, yet ultimately rests serenely within the Divine and the Eternal."[3] Various interpretations of the symbol are:

In other culturesEdit

See 7₄ knot for decorations or symbols in other cultures which are topologically equivalent to the interlaced form of the simplest version of the Buddhist endless knot.[4]

See alsoEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. ^ Robert Beer (2003),The Handbook of Tibetan Buddhist Symbols, Serindia Publications, ISBN 1-59030-100-5
  2. ^ Michael Danino (2010), Lost River: On The Trail of the Sarasvati,Penguin Books, ISBN 0143068644
  3. ^ Anna, Christina (2012). "Ancient Symbols". Retrieved 2014-05-14.
  4. ^ "7_4", The Knot Atlas.

External linksEdit