Mandala of Avalokiteshvara (Original) – Carmen Mensink
The Bodhisattva of Great Compassion (Tib. Chenrezig)
The Tibetan word for mandala, dkyil-khor, literally means ‘that which encircles a centre.’
A mandala can bes een as the celestial residence of a meditational deity. The structure of the palace models that of ancient Indian palaces.
Avalokiteshvara is the Buddhist deity who personifies the virtue of compassion. He is mainly depicted with either 4 or 1.000 arms, to symbolize his vast ability to help alleviate the suffering of beings.
Although depicted on a flat surface, the mandala is actually three-dimensional and should be visualized that way. The goal of the mandala is to serve as a tool on our spiritual journey. It’s like a roadmap that leads the practitioner to enlightenment.
Each aspect of the constructed mandala has deep meaning. The doorways on all four directions represent the Four Immeasurable Thoughts: love, compassion, joy, and equanimity. The lotus flower in the centre of the mandala represents the Lotus Family, one of the five Buddha families. The thousand-armed Avalokiteshvara is represented in the centre of the mandala by the seed syllable Hri. This syllable is the sound emanation of Avalokiteshvara.
To protect the mandala from negative energies and conditions, it is surrounded by a vajra fence and a fire wall.
Materials: Hand prepared canvas, gouache paints, gold.
Size: 21.3“ x 21.3” (54 x 54 cm), unframed.
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