Tag Archives: Bodhisattva

GODDESS GUAN YIN

Ade_Itameda_1

 

Last week Ade continued to work on this sleeve, this time he added the Goddess on the lower arm called Guan Yin. 

Guan Yin means “Observing the Sounds (or Cries) of the (human) World”. In Chinese Buddhism, Guan Yin is the same as the Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara (enlightenment being), the highest form of mercy, compassion, kindness & love. Along with Buddhism, Guan Yin was introduced into China as early as the 1st century AD, and slowly reached Japan on the way from Korea and to the other areas of Southeast Asia. Soon after Buddhism was introduced into the country for the first time around the mid-7th century. 

Guan Yin is very often portrayed as a beautiful woman in long, flowing white robes. In her right hand, she holds a jar containing pure, clear water, while her left hand bears the branch of a willow tree. Sometimes, she is accompanied by either two children or two warriors, while other images show her with a bird or astride a dragon. Some ancient depictions of Guan Yin show her dressed as a young girl holding a fish basket, which has probably contributed to her association with fishermen and the sea in certain coastal areas of China. She protects the distressed and hungry, rescues the unfortunate from danger, and gives comfort and aid wherever it is needed. And different then many other, she puts charity to shame, because she will never ask for donations. She had finally attained enlightenment after struggling with non-things. She was just about to enter heaven to join the other buddha’s when she heard the cries of the poor unsaved souls back on Earth. She felt touched and wanted to help and said that she will never rest until every single soul was brought to the world of Buddha’s. As a ‘holy being’ often called to appear in the most unusual and strange situations, she has the ability to transform into any living thing. In fact she’s better known in India as a male. But she often appears in female form to stay incognito. Guan Yin is without a doubt one of the most beloved deities in both religious and folk beliefs in China. Many believe that Guan Yin is the mother of all mankind, an idea that reminds us of the Virgin Mary.

 

 

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