Padmasambhava, 2008

Pastel and ink on paper

39 x 33 inches (frame)


Padmasambhava (8th c. AD) is considered to be the most important disseminator of Buddhism in Tibet. Like all Tibetan deities, Padmasambhava has many forms, some peaceful and some wrathful; this is his primary form. His right hand brandishes a five pointed vajra in the subduing mudra. His left hand holds a skull cup containing an elixir, a vase, and a long-life plant. He is wearing three robes, the white secret gown, a dharma robe, and a very fine great gown, showing that he embodies all the possibilities of yogi, monk, and king and has power in all domains. He holds a khatanga staff in the crook of his elbow. His skin is pink, to represent the union of the white and red essences that flow up the channels to either side of the main kundalini channel, symbolizing the union of wisdom and compassion. He is depicted as a sixteen year old. This image is taken from a 19th c. thanka.

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