Thangkas

White Tara

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Tara is the embodiment of the wisdom and compassion of all the buddhas and is often referred to as “the mother of all buddhas.” She is often depicted as having twenty-one forms in which she enacts various kinds of enlightened activities to help all living beings. In her form as White Tara, she bestows the gifts of longevity and freedom from illness.

Guru Rinpoche

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Guru Rinpoche, Padmasambhava, came to Tibet in the eighth century and helped to establish Buddhism and extensively spread the Vajrayana teachings. By many, he is considered “the second buddha” and is revered both as an important historical figure and an enduring embodiment of enlightenment. In his biographies, he is described as having appeared in eight different forms which are depicted here in order to tame the minds of various beings.

Namchak Refuge Image

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This image is a depiction of Guru Rinpoche, in his form known as “Dorje Tötreng,” in union with his consort Mandarava. When practicing the Namchak Preliminary Practices (Ngondro), we visualize our teacher in this form and imagine that he or she is the complete embodiment of all buddhas, bodhisattvas, dakas, and dakinis. The guru and consort in union represents appearance and emptiness, method and wisdom, basic space and pure awareness, and the union of masculine and feminine energies.

21 Taras

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Tara is often referred to as “the mother of all buddhas.” She is depicted here as having twenty-one forms in which she enacts various kinds of enlightened activities to help all living beings. There are various prayers and praises which enumerate them and describe their appearances and their particular ways of helping beings.