Well, I wrote to Jungly John, who is, I believe, in India now, but no answer yet. The sad truth is that I don't have any real expertise in thogchag iconography. But that does not stop me from offering some ideas. When I started going to Tibet, it was possible to find real, old, thogs for a few dollars. Those days are over. Fakes are getting better and better and that makes something like this all the more valuable. The worn metal where the cord held it for years is important . Also, there are no sharp edges of flash around the edges (as in "we just cast it.") . But the most important thing, to me, is that this thog has a story and a history. And it is a BEAUTY. Maybe it is an endless knot, or 5 jewels? We don't know but if you do, send a note. Thanks, Bob for sending the photo.
The Legendary John weighs in (he was, surprise, surprise, in Western Tibet):
I just happened upon this site and saw that you and others were trying to contact me. I think your email message was lost to my server. The thogchak you display is certainly just that: an ancient Tibetan talisman. While three interconnected rings in a triangular configuration are quite common, yours is rather unique and beautifully proportioned. It certainly has seen extended usage.