Buddhist protection amulet
padmasambhava scorpion (Guru Rinpoche)
silver 925 and copper.
Pendant dimensions: 48mm high by 28mm wide.
Weight of 15 grams.
Sold without chains.
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Guru Senge Dradog (Wylie: gu ru seng-sgra-sgrogs, Skrt: Guru Simhanada) of Nalanda University, the Lion of Debate, promulgator of the Dharma in the six realms of beings. It is shown in a very fierce, dark blue and imitative form of the powerful Bodhisattva Vajrapani, holding a lightning scepter in one hand and a scorpion in the other.
An amulet is a charm that serves to protect. (A talisman is one who brings good fortune.) The image of a scorpion, often as a woodcut on rice paper, appears widely in Himalayan cultures for this purpose. A scorpion wheel charm is associated with a Tibetan Buddhist practice Yamantaka.
The legend of Begtse, the Mongolian god of war, tells how he converted to Buddhism in the 16th century at the sight of the Transformation of the Dalai Lama into Chenrezi, the Bodhisattva of Compassion. As a result, it became a symbol of pacification and the last in the series of 8 (or 9) protectors of the Tibetan Buddhist Dharma or Dharmapalas.
"He is depicted with all the ornaments of the Dharmapala, brandishing a sword in his right hand, whose handle is in the shape of a scorpion, his left hand holds the orange heart of an enemy near his mouth, grabbing the same He tramples the corpse of a man with his left foot and the carcass of a horse with his right foot, his three eyes are full of fury against the enemies of the Dharma.
~ Nitin's essay in February 2001 at Exotic India Art.
Scorpio in Tibetan is digpa ratsa means a negative or harmful action and also, a threat. As in Beg-tse's symbolism, it evokes the power of the Buddha-Dharma to turn bad circumstances, even mortal ones, into beneficial ones.
For example, in the puja of fire for Vajradaka (Tib. Dorje Khadro) who is a fierce and wrathful deity invoked to purify negative actions, black sesame seeds are used to represent problems and regrets. They are arranged in the shape of a scorpion that is then consumed by fire as practitioners visualize all the physical, psychological and emotional obstacles compassionately annihilated by Dorje Khadro who joyfully devours them for us.
The tradition of the scorpion's transformative power makes it a suitable symbol for the Vajrayana or Tantric Buddhist masters. It is often used as a personal seal or stamp.
This stylized scorpion has 3 eyes, 8 legs with five segments and a tail with 5 joints. The figures total 52, the number of weeks in a year. The print can be colored in blue, green and red to represent one of three traditional elements: space/ether, air and fire. The Ngak'chang Rinpoche has a scorpion seal, and the red scorpion of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche can sometimes be seen on his calligraphy.
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