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Paintings > Thangka > Mandala of Paramasukha Chakrasamvara in Yab Yum
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Mandala of Paramasukha Chakrasamvara in Yab Yum

Mandala of Paramasukha Chakrasamvara in Yab Yum

Mandala of Paramasukha Chakrasamvara in Yab Yum

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Tibetan Thangka Painting

Size of Painted Surface 24.0" X 24.5"
Size with Brocade 36.0" X47.0"
Item Code:
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Mandala of Paramasukha Chakrasamvara in Yab Yum

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Viewed 14674 times since 21st Apr, 2012
This multi-color handsome thangka depicts the mandala of blue-colored Paramasukha Chakrasamvara and Vajravarahi in yab yum. In Buddhist Tantra, a mandala is a sacred diagram of the universe. It encompasses an area in which divine forces are present. Geometrically it is subdivided into squares and circles, in which are painted deities or symbols. In the center of the mandala lives the major deity. It also aids the devotees in meditation when he or she seeks to focus on divinities and to gain access to divine forces.

A mandala can be drawn on the ground with meticulously sifted colored sand. After the conclusion of the rite the mandala is removed. In course of time, mandala lost its original function as temporary aid at initiation rites, and merged with the thangka. The literally meaning of thangka is an object that can be rolled up. Thus the painted mandala became an everyday object of veneration, meditation, and ritual, and after the completion of the prayer, sadhana, or ritual rites, one can keep them in the proper place by rolling it.

Paramasukha Chakrasamvara and Vajravarahi Father-Mother are depicted in the center of the mandala. He stands in alidha posture of outstretched legs on moon disk on the prostrate figures and embracing his consort Vajravarahi. He has four ferocious heads and twelve arms. Among his four faces, front is blue, his right face is orange, while his left faces are red and green colors, respectively His principal hands are in vajrahumkara-mudra, carries the vajra and vajra-tipped bell, and embrace his consort His upper two hands hold the skin of an elephant. In the remaining hands he holds the trident, cranium-cup full of blood, severed head, vajra-tipped khatvanga, and two arms are in threatening gesture. His twelve arms represent the overcoming of the twelve folded chain of causation (nidana) . His hair is upswept in knots with decoration on it. He wears Heruka ornaments consisting of earrings, necklace and bracelets; scarves and a tiger-skin skirt; a skull crown with jewel; a crescent on the top right of the head, and garland of a fresh human heads.

His red colored prajna (consort) has one face and two arms. She is naked because she has set free from the illusions that hide the essence of things. Her left leg is along with his, while her right leg is wrapped around his waist. Her expression is also ferocious. She holds a vajra-marked chopper in her left hand and her right hand is behind his neck. She is adorned with bone ornaments – skull crown, earrings, armlets, bracelet, bone girdle, and garland of human skulls. There is wisdom fire aureole behind them. The figures are surrounded with eight Dakinis holding skull cup and khatvanga, out side the inner circle. The four corners of the square depicts skull cup. The walls of the square are decorated with lotus petals and stylized design. There are four gates in the square in cardinal direction and in which live Dakinis. According to Tibetan convention, east is in front, and south, west, and north follow in the clockwise direction. The eastern gateway is protected by owl-faced dakini Ulukasya, in blue color, pig faced dakini Sukarasya in yellow color, is protecting southern gate, red colored dog-faced dakini Shvanasya, is protecting western gate, and crow-faced dakni Kakasya in green color is protecting the northern gate. Over the gates are houses with decorations. There is a perhaps Dharma wheel in the upper center of the houses, flanked by two deers. Either side of the each gateway is depicted vases with auspicious symbols.

The square is surrounded by four circles. The outer circle is of wisdom fire or fire fence, which is stylistically rendered here. In Tantric Buddhism fire symbolizes knowledge and without knowledge(prajna) there is no possibility of arriving at supreme understanding. Here fire also means that believers who enter the mandala are purified, as it were, and at their passage through the purging fire, their ego and all their illusions will burn away. Then is a circle of vajra or dorje; it designates sunya or void, which cannot be cut or destroyed, but it destroyed all evils. A circle, depicting wrathful guardians, Naga Kanya, stupas, dakinis etc, follows this circle. Then there is the circle of lotus petals. Here the spiritual realm begins and one enters the mandala of Paramasukha Chakrasamvara and Vajravarahi father mother.

Four corners, out side the circles, are filled with the figures of four Dakinis in green, blue, red and white colors. They are holding vajra-tipped Chopper, Skull-cup and Khatvanga. They are looking ferocious and wearing skull crown, long garland of human skull and tiger-skin skirt. Auspicious Tibetan Buddhist symbols are also depicted in this area.

Chakrasamvara has a very important place in Buddhist pantheon and he represents the Buddha’s mind of compassion, while Vajravarahi, ‘Adamantine Sow’ symbolizes the nature of omniscient wisdom of a Buddha. Following his meditational path will lead the practitioner to the bliss of supreme enlightenment.

There is a legend that the Buddha emanated the mandala-palace and adopted this archetype deity form to teach the tantra to Shiva and Parvati on top of Mount Kailash at the headwaters of the Ganga in southern Tibet. According to another legend, Shiva took the form of Buddhist deity Chakrasamvara and he brought his teachings to Tibet. It is also said that both Shiva and Chakrasamvara are supposed to dwell on the Mount of Kailash, a place of pilgrimage both for Hindus and Tibetan Buddhists. The brocade is woven with stylized lotus flowers and vishva vajra.This thangka is brilliant drawn and painted.

This description is by Dr. Shailendra K. Verma, whose Doctorate thesis is on “Emergence and Evolution of the Buddha Image (From its inception to 8th century A.D.)”.

Click Here to View the Thangka Painting along with its Brocade

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