Mahamayuri

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Woodcut of Mahamayuri.jpg
Mahamayuri
Chinese name
Traditional Chinese孔雀明王
Simplified Chinese孔雀明王
Literal meaningGreat Peacock Wisdom Queen
Vietnamese name
VietnameseKhổng Tước Minh Vương
Korean name
Hangul공작명왕
Japanese name
Kanji孔雀明王
Sanskrit name
SanskritMahāmāyūrī Vidyārājñī

Mahamayuri (Sanskrit: महामायूरी Mahāmāyūrī ("great peacock"), Chinese: 孔雀明王 Kǒngquè Míngwáng, Vietnamese: Khổng Tước Minh Vương, Japanese: 孔雀明王, translit. Kujaku Myōō, Korean: 공작명왕 GongJakMyeongWang) is a Buddhist tantric text dedicated to a goddess, and also the name of one of the five protective goddesses in the Buddhist Pantheon.[1][2][3] Mahamayuri, also called Mahamayuir Vidya-rajni, is a peaceful goddess of wisdom (similar to Saraswati in Hinduism). In Buddhism, her demeanor is in contrast to the wrathful attitudes of male personifications of the Wisdom Kings.[4][5]

Mahamayuri statue in the Musée Guimet

Known as the 'Queen of the secret sciences' and Mahamayuri-vidyarajni, the Mother of Buddha in Mahayana Buddhism,[6][7] Mahamayuri had the power to protect devotees from poisoning, either physical or spiritual.[8][9][10] The Mahamayuri text is a Buddhist dharani-genre text, containing magical incantations to treat snake bites, poisons and other maladies.[11]

Mahamayuri's dharani was translated into Chinese by Kumārajīva between 402 and 412 CE.[1] It contains the only mention of the Rig Veda in the entire Chinese Buddhist canon.[citation needed]

Iconography[edit]

Mahamayuri is portrayed mostly with three heads white in colour and her two faces are green and blue in colour, often seated on a lotus throne on the peacock. She typically shown with eight armed, one of her four right hands displays varadamudra while the other three hands hold a great sword, vajra and jewel. In her four left hands she holds pindapatra, a jar showering jewels, a bell and a flower.[12]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b John C. Huntington; Dina Bangdel (2003). The Circle of Bliss: Buddhist Meditational Art. Serindia Publications. pp. 24–25. ISBN 978-1-932476-01-9.
  2. ^ Roshen Dalal (2010). The Religions of India: A Concise Guide to Nine Major Faiths. Penguin. p. 218. ISBN 978-0-14-341517-6.
  3. ^ Miranda Eberle Shaw (2006). Buddhist Goddesses of India. Princeton University Press. pp. 233, 339–341, 465 note 77. ISBN 0-691-12758-1.
  4. ^ Musée Guimet exhibit
  5. ^ "About the Buddhist Painting, Peacock Myoo (Mahamayuri)". Kyoto National Museum. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  6. ^ "Kamei Peacock Tail - Kamei Glass Co., Osaka". Carnival Glass Worldwide. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  7. ^ "(孔雀明王咒) 的經典". paper.udn.com (in Chinese). Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  8. ^ Art Institute of Chicago (2004). Notable Acquisitions at the Art Institute of Chicago. University of Illinois Press. p. 36. ISBN 978-0-86559-209-4.
  9. ^ Musée Guimet exhibit
  10. ^ "True Buddha Dharma-character Treasury - Mahamayuri". tbsn.org. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  11. ^ SKR Rao (1985). Encyclopaedia of Indian Medicine. Popular Prakashan. p. 73. ISBN 978-81-7154-255-0.
  12. ^ Peacock King