Symbolism And The Shih Tzu

FOREHEAD--a white mark on the forehead was perceived as the energy 
center, the third eye or sixth chakra...symbolic of the trinity, oneness of 
mind, universalism, salvation forall, and the three mystical areas (body, 
mouth, and mind). Positive qualities were believed to exude from the Shih 
Tzu: intuition, optimism, and vision.

TOPKNOT AND FACE-- a symbolic representation of all forms of artistic creativity, mysticism, charm, magical powers, wisdom, love. The luxurious featherings on the Shih Tzu head and face are symbolic of the rays of the 
sun and the sacred adumbara flower that blooms once every 3,000 years.

RUFF--the white neck and front of the Shih Tzu is symbolic of Buddha's swelling cape of dignity. The cape permitted its wearer, as administrator of the sun, moon, and stars, the privilege of attending to purity, justice, virtue. The Rosary of Kuan Yin- Goddess of Mercy and Compassion, and the three rings of the Buddha are one the cape.

COAT--or skirt of the Shih Tzu is symbolic of light, strength, and courage. The Buddha's flock must never reject their children, their parents, those who love them, or those whom they have loved, lest they never reach Nirvana. Buddha-like, the Shih Tzu was considered the guardian of wisdom so that all may reverse their imperfections.

BACK--a marking may be present in the middle of the back or there may be one that 
extends from the upper back to the end of the back or nearly as far as the tip of the tail. This blanket or saddle effect is symbolic of the saddle or blanket upon which Buddha is seated as minister of the sun, moon, stars. It was symbolic of the three vehicles of 
learning leading to wisdom: discipline, knowledge, meditation. The Shih Tzu is to carry a rider through the air to realize material gain of wealth and jewels.

TAIL--the heavily plumed tail that forms a graceful arch over the back represents one of
the five Royal Insignia attributed to anointed kings and holy men. This umbrella like 
feature is symbolic of Buddha covering his form, protecting him from worldly 

FEET--considered reminiscent of the Buddha's shoes, embroidered with jewels, to convey the wearer 100 miles without fatigue and give the wearer the ability to glide across water without wetting the feet.
The Buddhist religion, its philosophy and lion symbolism were partly responsible for the high respect given to the Lion Dogs in the Forbidden City.  Known as Ab-bah Go---dogs owned by the revered ones or ones of royal status--Shih Tzu were accredited with a 
number of characteristics comparable to those of Buddha.