This is the Circassian seed = the "magic charm bean" that comes from the "kunda-mani" which is the "good luck tree" of India. A tiny carved elephant protrudes from the seed, like a fancy stopper on an expensive bottle of whiskey. Inside the seed are approximately 12 tiny carved elephants (though you must use a little imagination on some of the tiny elephants!). Hindu legend states that the owner of this seed will be granted a secret wish for each miniature hand-carved elephant contained inside.
The significance of 12 elephants and the magical red seeds obviously centers around the sacred temple of Guruvayoor in the state of Kerala on the tropical Malabar coast of southwestern India. A large uruli, a heavybottomed vessel, is placed near the entrance to the sanctum of the temple and it is filled with bright red "manjadikuru" seeds. It is believed that the devotee who places his hands in the uruli and ploughs through the seeds three times is cured of all diseases and attains prosperity. The main festival celebrated at the Guruvayoor temple is the Ekadasi of the Mandala season (November - December) when a procession of caparisoned elephants is taken out to honor Guruvayoor Kesawan, an elephant gifted to the temple by the king of Nilambur and was famed for his sheer devotion to the Lord. Seevelis (elephant ride of the idol around the temple) and the 12 day Carnatic Music Festival are also held during the same time. The temple's annual festivities (Utsavam) are held in February - March and a mock elepant race is the highlight of this festival.
Circassian seeds are produced by a tropical Asian tree called the red sandalwood (Adenanthera Pavonina), a beautiful tree of the legume family (Fabaceae) with pinnately compound leaves and dense racemes of fragrant, creamy-yellow blossoms. It is also called the "bead tree," "necklace tree," and "peacock flower-fence." On many islands of the Caribbean, the bright red seeds produced by this tree are known as "jumbie beads."
Of all the thousands of species of seed-bearing plants on earth, Circassian seeds are certainly one of the most beautiful. The naturally-shiny, bright red seeds are used for leis, necklaces, bracelets, earrings and rosaries throughout the Old and New World tropics. They have a remarkably uniform weight, each seed weighing about four grains. It takes about four seeds to make one gram, and approximately 109 of them to make an ounce.
Thousands of years ago, goldsmiths of Asia used the red seeds in their scales to weigh precious gems, gold and silver. A pearl or diamond weighing 20 grains would be roughly equivalent in weight to five shiny Circassian seeds.
These seeds are the perfect tiny gift, party favor, or novelty item ... and they are just downright magical!!!
Brings back memories. Thank you.
Jan 26, 2018 by DOUGLAS BRIMACOMBE
I was so happy to find this, I had one when I was much younger. Very unique.
Jan 16, 2018 by Freida Helms
Seller contacted me and awwaiting item.
Jan 10, 2018 by sairseclark
Not received item. seller contacted me. Hope to receive items.