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Tibetan Terracotta Buddha Statue

MAHAKALA

Protector Small Shrine
Circa: 16th/17th century
H. 8 in.(20cm.) x W. 6 in.(15cm) x D. 2in.(5cm)
Condition: very good

Mahakala, like Lhamo Penden, Yamaraja and Vajrapani, Mahakala is one of the Dharmapalas who was originally a demon, and was later tamed by Manjushri and Avolokiteshvera and turned into a fierce protector of the Buddha's teachings ( dharma ). He is considered as an archetype deity, functioning as an enlightened being with whom the practitioner identifies. As a terrific manifestation, Mahakala has the spiritual power to conquer addictive emotions and to dispel inner obstacles. He is the most popular of all the terrific deities in Tibet. We believe that this Mahakala statue is once worshipped in a Tibetan home shrine.

Tibetan Clay Mahakala

This clay sculpture of the three headed-six armed Mahakala in striking pose is one of the rare works from the late 16th - early 17th century of Tibetan art. (However, the design of motifs on the lotus and frame border suggested that it was made in Napal, or by Napalese artist). He was modeled in great detail, and is depicted with nine severed heads on his crown, wrapped in tiger skins, with four hands striking forward in threatening gestures ( Tarjani Mudra ), and two feet firmly placed on the body of ignorance. Despite its age, much of its original paint remaining vivid, a rare occurrence given under the Tibetan clay modeling and painting techniques.

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