Himalayan Art Resources

Item: Teacher (Lama) - (multiple figures)

བླ་མ། 喇嘛
(item no. 30923)
Origin Location Tibet
Date Range 1500 - 1599
Lineages Sakya, Ngor (Sakya) and Buddhist
Material Ground Mineral Pigment on Cotton
Collection Private
Notes about the Central Figure

Classification: Person

Interpretation / Description

Four Sakya Lamdre Teachers: Sakya Pandita Kunga Gyaltsen (1182-1251), Chogyal Pagpa Lodro Gyaltsen (1235-1280), Shang Konchog Pal (1240-1308) and naza Dragpugpa (1277-1350) from a set of paintings depicting the Lamdre (Margapala) Lineage. This composition is the 2nd left painting in the set (the 5th painting in sequence over all).

The four larger figures represent a sequence of teachers within a larger number of compositions making up a painting set. The full set is designed to have the first painting containing the primordial Buddha Vajradhara placed, or hung as the center piece. The lineage then descends to the right and left sides of that center beginning on the viewer's left. The first painting in the set depicts figure number one (Vajradhara). The first painting on the viewer's left has lineage figures 2 through 5. The first painting placed on the viewer's right has figures 6 through 9. The composition above is the 5th painting and contains lineage figures 14 through 17. All of the subsequent compositions in the painting set alternate from left to right in the same fashion.

At the bottom of the composition are four prayers dedicated to the principal four figures of the painting. The prayers on the other compositions up to this point and including Sakya Pandita belong to a text called the 'Offering Prayers of the Lamdre Lineage' by Chogyal Pagpa (1235-1280). lam 'bras brgyud pa'i phag mchod bzhugs, pages 71-80 [prayers page 73].

Jeff Watt 1-2013

Secondary Images
Related Items
Thematic Sets
Subject: Margapala Lineage Paintings (Four Figures)
Subject: Margapala Sets (Four Figures)
Teacher: Sakya Pandita (Masterworks)
Painting Set: Margapala [17]