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Tibetan Gilt Bronze Buddha Statue
Mahakala
Triumph over Vinayaka
Circa: 19th Century
H 10 in.(25cm), W 7.5 in.(19cm), D 4 in.(10cm)
Condition: closed base, gilt loss
 


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A fierce Mahakala in bronze, with fangs, bulging eyes and curling tongue.He wears a five-skull crown, symbolizing his triumph over the five poisons; he is adorned with snakes, a garland of severed heads, a leopard skin garment, armbands, jeweled ornaments and furling scarves. His eyebrows and whiskers are like fur, his beard is in coils, his hair is a rising mass of flames. Across his back he wears the fresh skin of an elephant. Originally a demon, Mahakala was tamed by Avalokiteshvara and transformed into a protector of Buddhism. He is seen here trampling upon the elephant-headed representation of the ignorance that obstructs progress on the path to realization. Mahakala is a reminder of the dedication required to ruthlessly destroy all obscurations.

  
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