SHADAKSHARI LOKESHVARA II, 2009
acrylic on canvas
38 x 32 inches (frame)
Shadakshari Lokeshvara is the four-armed manifestation of Avalokiteshvara, the bodhisattva of compassion, known as Chenrezig in Tibet and as Kuan Yin in Japan. He has a special importance for Tibetans since the Dalai Lamas are considered to be incarnations of Avalokiteshvara. Avalokiteshvara (the Lord who gazes down at the world with compassion) is ultimately an emanation of the Dhyani Buddha Amitabha.
Shadakshari means Lord of the Six Syllables which refers to the famous mantra of six syllables OM MANI PADME HUM, Hail to the Jewel in the Lotus. The six syllables are the seed syllables of the six realms of the wheel of life from which Avalokiteshvara delivers beings into enlightenment.
OM is white and stands for the god realm. MA is green and stands for the demigod or asura realm. NI is yellow and stands for the human realm. PAD is blue and stands for the animal realm. ME is red and stands for the hungry ghost realm. HUM is black and stands for the hell realm. Shadakshari’s mandala depicts him in the center surrounded by a lotus of six petals, each of which represents one of the syllables.