Avalokiteshvara regards us unwaveringly from a disc of moon and lotus, high above a strange and awe inspiring mountainous rock crag at the ocean’s edge. A ropy coil of interlaced and dynamically swirling rainbow lights support the disc on which he sits. They emerge from the inner recesses of a cave about half-way up the large rock face whose curious striations are marked, at the outer edges, with gold.
The cliff’s inner recesses and basaltic upheavals coalesce majestically upwards, yet the image of the rock formation is nevertheless eclipsed by the centrality and brightness of Avalokiteshvara’s dazzling figure. Powerful, lustrous, and unfaltering, he gazes with single-pointed love upon all that arises in the serene yet subtly tumultuous landscape over which he presides.
This scene is about the great Buddhist master Dharmarakshita. Dharmarakshita was the author of two very famous Lojong texts known as The Wheel of Sharp Weapons, and The Peacock in the Poison Grove. He was an incredible master who was able to meet Avalokiteshvara directly.
One story tells how Dharmarakshita gave his own flesh to save a dying man. Later that night, and in incredible pain, Avalokiteshvara came to Dharmarakshita in a vision, saying that he had done a wonderful thing. The following morning, due to his immense act of kindness, and the blessing of Avalokiteshvara, Dharmarakshita was able to see emptiness directly in his meditation.
The image shows a cave, within which Dharmarakshita meditates. Above, and outside the cave, Avalokiteshvara appears. Rainbows radiate from the cave, indicating that trough the power of Dharmarakshitas kindness, he is able to meet Avalokitshvara at will.
March 15th, 2014
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