Himalayan Art Resources

Item: Worldly Protector (Buddhist) - Lha Chenpo

འཇིག་རྟེན་པའི་ལྷ། ནང་ལྷ། 世俗的神(佛教)
(item no. 65842)
Origin Location Bhutan
Date Range 1800 - 1899
Lineages Drukpa (Kagyu, Bhutan) and Buddhist
Material Red Background on Cotton
Collection Rubin Museum of Art
Notes about the Central Figure

Classification: Deity

Appearance: Semi-Peaceful

Gender: Male

Interpretation / Description

Maha Deva (Tibetan: lha chen po, English: Great God): also known as Shiva - emanation of Avalokiteshvara.

"...Great God, Ishvara, with a body red in colour, like ruby, blazing with light. Having one face, two hands and three eyes, charming and passionate in appearance. In the right [hand] holding aloft a hook to gather the Three Realms and the left a lasso of wind. The hair is bound in a tuft decorated with a crescent moon. Adorned with silks and jewels, naked with a red linga, engorged and erect. The right leg is bent and the left extended in a standing posture. Embraced by the consort, Uma Devi, bright red, beautiful and affectionate. The right [hand] holds a conch shell vessel to the Father and the left a hook; adorned with jewels..." (Min-ling Lochen Dharmashri, 1654-1718. Tibetan source text part II, pp.364-365).

"To the discerning pristine awareness body of all conquerors, emanation body of compassion of the powerful Avalokiteshvara, benevolent Lord of the World: Mahadeva together with consort, Uma, I pay homage." (Nyingma liturgical verse).

The practice of Mahadeva is a Revealed Treasure teaching (Tib.: Terma) unique to the Nyingma Tradition of Tibetan Buddhism.

Jeff Watt 10-1998 [12-2008]

Secondary Images
Related Items
Thematic Sets
Buddhist Worldly Protector: Lha Chenpo Iconography
Buddhist Worldly Protector: Lha Chenpo Religious Context
Painting Type: Red Background
Collection of Rubin Museum of Art: Painting Gallery 4
Collection of Rubin Museum of Art: Bhutan
Buddhist Worldly Protector: Lha Chenpo Art History
Buddhist Worldly Protector: Lha Chenpo Main Page
Region: Bhutan: Painting & Textile Masterworks