«Konkha» - shells - ritual musical instruments. China. Tibeto-Chinese style. 19th century

«Konkha» - shells - ritual musical instruments. China. Tibeto-Chinese style. 19th century

Shell is one of the widespread symbols in Buddhism. Conch shell twisted to the right is one of the "Eight Auspicious Signs" of Buddhism and symbolized the bliss and by Buddha's preaching. These shells are used as a musical instruments - a pipes in a silver frame made of the shell of the sea snail. These seashells were blown before the service began, calling monks and the laity inviting all Buddhas and bodhisattvas to take part in the rite. 

Similar pipes were of different sizes and thus produced sounds of different pitch.