Whether called a Harmony Ball, a Bola or Druid Ball the similarities are that it is seen to be a piece of jewellery, it includes a chiming ball and in most cases has cultural, regional and family heritage significance.
Firstly let’s examine what a Harmony Ball is. The Harmony Ball is a common piece of jewellery in both Balinese and Mayan (Mexican) cultures, in Mexican culture it is call a Bola. The Harmony Ball also has origins in Celtic culture where it was known as a Druid Ball. A Harmony Ball Pendant generally consists of an outer “cage” and the chime ball contained within. Some cages are hinged, allowing for the changing or replacement of the chime ball, whilst others are fixed (soldered) after the chime ball is inserted. Harmony Balls can be made from a number of metals with sterling silver being the predominant metal of choice for its value, lustre and strength.
Theses Harmony Balls are made primarily by village or regional silversmiths or jewellers invariably using traditional methods and adding in some “local” originality. The Chime ball itself is generally made from brass and the chime is achieved by a series of differing sizes “tongues” of brass fixed on the inside of the ball with a smaller ball inside. With movement the smaller ball rolls around running over the different length tongues and against the inside wall of the larger brass ball, like a bell, creating a variation of sounds that result in a chime with most chimes being unique to each individual Harmony Ball.
Aside from the very high skill level required by a silversmith to create such wonderful sterling silver outer cages or skins, much of the skill is also in the design and making of the inner parts of the chime ball – the higher the skill of the silversmith the better the sound of the Harmony Ball. Silversmiths will often experiment with thicknesses of materials and indeed different materials in an effort to create different chime sounds.
The outer cages of Harmony Balls can vary significantly – some are made using flattened sheets of sterling silver intricately cut to create many different patterns, some are made using a thin sterling silver wire which is twisted, entwined and formed to create intricate wire cages. Some Harmony Ball outer cages are actually solid sterling silver skins whilst some are brass skins plated with sterling silver – in some cases highly polished and in others engraved with varying ornate impressions.
The Harmony Ball pendant is worn mainly as a necklace whilst they can also be worn as earrings or attached to a bracelet. Harmony Ball Pendants are often worn on a long necklace cord by women when pregnant so that the Harmony Ball rest over the bump with the chime sound relaxing the baby in the womb. So if that is a Harmony Ball then what is a Dream Ball and how does it differ?
A Dream Ball is exactly what is described above as a Harmony Ball with the following differences. The Dream Ball has a cylindrical stem at the top of the pendant where on a Harmony Ball the ring would be for attaching a necklace bale. The length of the stem can vary greatly from one style of Dream Ball to another as can the diameter, suffice to say an average length is about 15mm (a bit over ½”) and diameter about 4-5mm (5/32”). The end of the stem is fitted with a Gemstone which acts as a plug. The stem was usually used to contain the “dream/s” of the wearer. The wearer would generally write down their dream on a small piece of paper or parchment and roll it tightly and put it inside the “tube” of the stem then tap the Gemstone in the opening of the stem creating a force fit hence sealing the dream inside the Dream Harmony Ball pendant.
The wearer would always be carrying their dream and in some cases share that dream with family by handing down the dream ball pendant to a son or daughter.
So the Dream “Harmony” Ball is different in some respects however in most cases is simply called a Harmony Ball. The Dream Ball by virtue of its design is often more ornate than a Harmony Ball and of course includes a Gemstone so is generally more valuable than a Harmony Ball.
LUCK & MONEYElephant figures
Elephant is a symbol of strength, power, stability and wisdom. The lucky elephant charm is a deliberate bit of cultural exoticism found in America and Europe.
TRADITIONAmulets and Talismans
Amulets and talismans vary considerably according to their time and place of origin. In many societies, religious objects serve as amulets. A religious amulet might be the figure of a certain god or simply some symbol representing the deity such as the cross for Christians or the "eye of Horus" for the ancient Egyptians.
HARMONY BALLSBola balls for expecting Mamas
The Mexican Bola is designed to create a gentle soft chiming sound during mums movement and the baby is relaxed by these chimes up until the birth. Pregnant women wear the sound ball directly at stomach height.