Himalayan Art Resources

Item: Japan: Achala - Achala

མི་གཡོ་བ། 不动明王(梵名:阿遮罗)
(item no. 7523)
Date Range 800 - 899
Lineages Buddhist
Material Wood
Collection Private
Notes about the Central Figure

Appearance: Wrathful

Gender: Male

Interpretation / Description

Achalanata, believed to be carved from red sandalwood by Kobo Daishi Kukai (774-835). The sculpture is kept in a box and opened only once a year. (The image displayed here is a replica).

The sculpture is known as the Namikiri Fudo (Wave-cutting Fudo). Legend says that on his return voyage to Japan from China, in the year 806, he prayed to this statue to save the boat from capsizing during an intense sea storm which saved not only many lives but ritual objects and texts.

Belonging to the Nanin Temple of Mount Koya, the sculpture is enclosed within a box, away from the public eye as a hibutsu (secret deity). The statue is revealed once a year on June 28th, as the number 28 is associated with Achala in Japanese astrology. June is the auspicious month of Kukai’s birth.

Shinzo Shiratori 1-2022



View other items in the Thematic Set: Japan: Achala (Fudo-myoo) Masterworks & National Treasures