The "Cowherd and the Weaving Maiden" is a love story that has been passed down since the Han dynasty (202 BC – 9 AD, 25–220 AD). It has become one of the four major folklore love stories in China. The two main characters, Niulang the Cowherd and Zhinü the Weaving Maiden, started to fall in love in the heaven despite of the forbidden laws of heaven that disallowed such relationships. They descended to and reunited in the mortal world.
Every year, the seventh day of the seventh lunisolar month dedicates to the remembrance of the story. People usually exchange gifts with each other and watch the meteor shower at night. This meteor shower depicts the countless magpies in the sky, forming into a bridge connecting the heavenly realm and the mortal world, allowing Niulang, Zhinü and their children to meet once a year.
Although there are numerous gifts that represent love and patience, pearls are possibly the only ones that can aptly represent the Qixi Festival and the story of the Cowherd and the Weaving Maiden. Pearls have represented purity and eternal love in various literature since ancient times, and the pearls' formation process also represents life and growth. A pearl transformed into a jewelry can become a token of love embedded with a deeper meaning.
Ring: There is Only One
The pearl oysters must weather through countless challenges while staying focus and being patient in order to produce the beautiful natural gem. Patience and focus are also two ingredients that help love to blossom.
Earrings: Two Comes Together
Love is more than just a romantic feeling. It represents two separate beings coming to grow together. Each pearl is like a unique individual. To create a pair of pearl earrings requires time to find the matching pearl. There is no coincidences that two people would meet together. While the two somehow made the unintentional efforts to meet up, do also believe that there is always someone with greater power who arranges all things cleverly.
Bracelet: Staying in Love
At first, the Cowherd and the Weaving Maiden were on opposite sides of the divide. They could only have dreamt for each other. However, the old cow Taurus did not mind sacrificing itself to the point of being relegated to earth from heaven to help fulfill and guard the love between Niulang and Zhinü. The making of a pearl bracelet is never a simple matching process. A pearl bracelet of uniform color, size and shape requires the time and effort of a master craftsman to find the pearls from a vast amount of pearl stock in order to make it. Thus, a pearl bracelet represents the faith and patience of the giver in love.
Necklace: Love Transforms to Life
The love of "Cowherd and Weaving Maiden" involves the transformation from patience to commitment and dedication. The lovers are willing to spend their humble lives together in the mortal world, but it was from this simple life that they found their happiness and satisfaction. The process of making a necklace is long but simple. However, it is this kind of persistence that leads to the greatest and most enduring value. This is why the heavens were touched and did not mind leaving an opening in the Divine Order for Niulang, Zhinü and their children to meet up each year.
The story of "Cowherd and Weaving Maiden": click here
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