The sweet faced serene Buddha Shakyamuni is seated in vajraparyankasana on moon disk on lotus flower on lion throne against a brilliant aureole with halo. The front of lion throne depicts Svayambhunath Chaitya and over which are Ashtamangala symbols. The pedestal of the Chaitya is flanked with auspicious offerings, deer and swan. The right hand of the Buddha is in bhumisparsha-mudra and his left hand is in meditation position and holds a pinda-patra. The bhumisparsha-mudra of the Buddha symbolized his victory over Mara (evil) and attainment of his enlightenment at Bodhgaya. The Buddhists believes that mere sight of Buddha's bhumisparsha-mudra guarantees the believer that it will ward off all evil. The pinda-patra, which the Buddha usually holds in left hand, held in meditation position, is the attribute of all Theravada Buddhist monks who pass by houses in the morning to beg for food. The monks are to accept the food that is given them. Around noon, all the monks eat the food together as the only meal of the day. The practice is still prevalent in many Theravada countries.
The upper and bottom corners depict four Dhyani Buddhas. The Dhyani Buddhas have special place in Buddhist pantheon. It is said that when all was perfect void the mystic syllable AUM became manifest, from which at his own will the Adi-Buddha was produced. At the creation of the world he revealed himself in the form of a flame and out of the Adi-Buddha's permanent state of meditation, the Five Dhyani Buddhas emanate in a spiritual sense.
The Buddhist believe that the world is composed of five cosmic elements or skandhas. The five skandhas are Rupa (form), vedana (sensation), samjna (name), samskara (conformation) and vijnana (consciousness). These elements are eternal cosmic forces and are without a beginning or and end. These cosmic forces are deified in Vajrayana tradition as the five Dhyani Buddhas. These Dhyani Buddhas are the progenitors of the five families of deities constituting the whole of the Buddhist pantheon. These Dhyani Buddhas are a special kind of Buddhas who are not required to pass through the stage of a Bodhisattva. They are never anything less than a Buddha. They are always engaged in peaceful meditation, and they voluntarily abstain themselves from the act of creation. To create is the work of their emanations, the Divine Bodhisattvas.
The upper left corner of the paintings depicts the Dhyani Buddha Vairochana. He is seated in vajraparyankasana on lotus throne on Garuda. His both the hands are in preaching gesture. He represents cosmic element of Rupa (form). He is regarded as the oldest and the first Dhyani Buddha and his place is in the sanctum of the stupa where he is the master of the whole temple and its contents. Vairochana is the embodiment of the Tathagata family, and is established as an embodiment of Adarsha (ideal) knowledge.
The upper right corner depicts the Dhyani Buddha Amoghasiddhi, who is seated in vajraparyankasana on the lotus throne on Garuda. His right hand is in abhaya-mudra, a pose of the hands indicating protection. His left hand is held in meditation position and holds a pinda-patra. Amoghasiddhi represents the cosmic element of samskara (conformation). He has the power of infallible magic. He is the embodiment of the rainy season.
The bottom left corner depicts the Dhyani Buddha Ratnasambhava who is seated in vajraparyankasana on lotus throne. His right hand is in Varada-mudra, while the left hand, held in meditation position, is holding an alms bowl. He is the third Dhyani Buddha and he represents the cosmic element of vedana (sensation). He is associated with the southern direction and with the addictions of pride and avarice, which he helps the practitioner to transform into wisdom of equanimity. His clan is jewel.
The bottom right corner depicts Dhyani Buddha Amitabha the Buddha of infinite light. He is seated in vajraparyankasana on a lotus throne. He is the lord of the western paradise called sukhavati, also known as land of bliss or Pureland.
The upper centre is filled with rainbow light with clouds. Each side of Shakyamuni depicts dragon. The middle ground and foreground is filled with clouds, high peaks, covered with snow, rock formations, lakes, wild animals, trees, natural vegetation and auspicious peaceful offerings. The border of the painting depicts dragons with clouds, wrathful figures in cardinal directions and offerings etc. The bottom of the paintings depicts Buddhist verses in Tibetan script.
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.)".
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