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SKU: T03085

Dudjom Tersar Refuge Tree Print

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These giclee reproductions replicate antique Tibetan thangka paintings, many originally housed in temples in Tibet. These masterfully painted, iconographically accurate works of art are perfect for meditation practice as well as being deeply aesthetically satisfying.

They are printed using archival, pigment-based inks on high quality poster paper, engineered to give the highest resolution and color saturation achievable with current digital printing technology.

Painting: 24 x 18.75.

Dudjom Tersar Refuge Tree: This thangka was painted by Chewang Dorje in 2003, and depicts the Nyingma Refuge Tree, or Merit Field assembly, which is visualized in the 'Preliminary Practices (ngondro) of the New Treasure (tersar) tradition of Dudjom Rinpoche'. Padmasambhava is said to have written the concise text for this practice in the ninth century, before concealing it as a hidden treasure (terma) that would be discovered in a more degenerate time when people had less time to practice the dharma. The great treasure-finder (terton) who was destined to reveal this 'new treasure' was Dudjom Lingpa (1835-1904), whose subsequent incarnation as Dudjom Rinpoche, Jigdral Yeshe Dorje (1904-87), then extensively taught this practice throughout his life.

Of this concise ngondro text, Dudjom Rinpoche said: "This is a condensed version of the preliminary practices that clearly elucidates their essential meaning, which is intended for those who do not fully understand or have the time to perform the extensive preliminary practices." This Refuge Tree arises from the waters of Lake Danakosha, the sacred lake where Padmasambhava, the 'Precious Guru who subjugates the Three Worlds', was miraculously born upon a lotus. Padmasambhava appears at the top of the tree seated upon a lotus and lion-throne, and wearing his characteristic lotus-hat and the three robes that represent his mastery of the three Buddhist yanas or 'vehicles'. His radiant aura is encircled with lotus flowers and a rainbow, and behind his lion-throne are stacks of silk-covered dharma texts.

Directly above Padmasambhava are ten cloud-borne lineage gurus, which descend in sequence from Samantabhadra at the top to the late Dudjom Rinpoche at the lower right. Directly in front of Padmasambhava are the eight wrathful yidam deities of the orally transmitted Mahayoga Tantra traditions, who each have three heads, four legs and six arms, and stand in sexual union with their consorts. These eight deities are: Yamantaka, Hayagriva, Shri Heruka, Vajramrita, Vajrakila, Matarah, Lokastotrapuja, and Vajramantrabhiru.

On the main lotus-branch to Padmasambhava's right is a rainbow circle with Shakyamuni seated at the centre of twenty-four other Buddhas, who collectively represent the thousand Buddhas of our era. On the branch to Padmasambhava's left is a similar rainbow that contains an inner circle of the eight great bodhisattvas with Avalokiteshvara at its centre, and an outer circle that contains the assembly of the Sixteen Arhats. And across the lower lotus petals of the tree are the main male and female dharmapalas or protective deities of the Nyingma tradition. In the upper sky are cloud-borne gods who hold various sensual offerings, such as banners, parasols and musical instruments. And in the lower landscape are auspicious offerings, prostrating practitioners, a palace, and a monk making a mandala offering.

Text by Robert Beer

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