At once recognisable from the sword He wields high above His head, the haloed Lord Manjushri floats about in a sea of silken sashes in the centre of the mandala. He is surrounded by circular rows of long-haired bodhisattvas in the midst of their tapa, their bodies having assumed the finest vrikshanas (asana pertaining to the values of the tree). On the outside of the closed rectilinear curves are the structures of HImalayan temples and ascetics steeped in samadhi (contemplation). The same are interspersed with gentle clouds of an ashen colour, in keeping with the monotone composition.
Note the miniscule, curvaceous lines that make up the ringlets of lotus petals and flames, respectively, surrounding the main mandala of Lord Manjushri. A seductive shade of charcoal makes up the solid-coloured background of the mandala. A snatch of vine laden with lotuses and jewels and leaf, an essential element of traditional Nepalese art, is to be found in each of the four corners of the thangka.