Buddhist Deity: Avalokiteshvara (Eleven Faces, Namka Gyalpo)
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The Namka Gyalpo and Bhikshuni Shri forms of Avalokiteshvara are different in five ways:
1. Origin and Chronology
4. Hand attributes
5. Retinue figures: number and identity
The origins of the Namka Gyalpo Tradition of Avalokiteshvara begin with the Tibetan King Songtsen Gampo in the 7th century. The physical appearance of Avalokiteshvara in this tradition is different than the appearance of Avalokiteshvara in the Bhikshuni Shri tradition. Namka Gyalpo has five tiers of stacked heads. In the lowest tier are three horizontal white faces. Above that are three horizontal yellow faces. Above that are two wrathful red faces. Above that are two wrathful blue faces and finally a red face at the very top. The hand attributes are different for the secondary hands following the initial eight hands.
Lineage: Avalokiteshvara, Songtsen Gampo, Padmasambhava, Trisong Detsen, Drubtob Ngodrub, Ngadag Nyangral, Se Mikyo Dorje, Shakya Zangpo, Gewa Bum, Cham Yeshe Chog, Chu Gompa, Ta Shi Chatral, Tsulchen Sonam Sengge, Lama Tashi Gyaltsen, Chu Ngagpa Lodro Gyatso, Pagchog Norzang, Choje Zangpo Gyaltsen, Khedrub Palden Sanggye, Tennawa Ngagwang Dragpa, Jangsem Sherpal, Jetsun Drolchog, Je Lawang Dragpa, etc. (Rinjung, Taranata).
(Also see Sacred Vision, Early Paintings From Central Tibet, 1998, Metropolitan Museum of Art. Catalog plate #12. For images of Songtsen Gampo and Namka Gyalpo as a minor figure see HAR #71936 and #74124).