Himalayan Art Resources

Item: Mandala of Medicine Buddha

སངས་རྒྱས་སྨན་ལྷ། 药师佛
(item no. 146)
Origin Location Bhutan
Date Range 1800 - 1899
Lineages Kagyu, Drukpa (Kagyu) and Buddhist
Size 59.69x43.18cm (23.50x17in)
Material Ground Mineral Pigment on Cotton
Collection Rubin Museum of Art
Catalogue # acc.# P1995.15.3
Notes about the Central Figure

Classification: Deity

Interpretation / Description

Medicine Buddha Mandala (Sanskrit: Bhaishajyaguru mandala. Tibetan: sang gye men la kyil kor. English: the Buddha, Guru of Medicine). At the center representing the goddess Prajnaparamita is the sutra (text) by the same name.

Tibetan: Sang gye men la

When painting tangkas of Medicine Buddha he switches places with Prajnaparamita and occupies one of the eight minor positions surrounding the center. Some paintings actually portray the Goddess herelf rather than using the sutra text.

The form and practice of Medicine Buddha is derived from the Bhaishajyaguru Sutra taught by Lord Shakyamuni. In the Vajrayana Tradition this sutra is classified as a Kriya Tantra. Common to all schools of Tibetan Buddhism Medicine Buddha is particularly important to the medical traditions.

Jeff Watt 9-2000

Related Items
Thematic Sets
Subject: Tibetan Medicine Main Page
Mandala: Mandala Main Page
Mandala: Geometric Shaped Mandalas
Buddhist Deity: Medicine Buddha Main Page
Collection of Rubin Museum of Art: Bhutan
Buddhist Deity: Medicine Buddha Pureland (Square Format)
Buddhist Deity: Medicine Buddha Mandala
Region: Bhutan, Deities
Collection of Rubin Museum of Art: Mandala
Buddhist Deity: Medicine Buddha (Prajnaparamita)
Exhibition: The Art of Tibetan Medicine