Dorje Setrab Masterworks
Subjects, Topics & Types:
- Description (below)
- Painting Region & Date
- Three Kings
- Five 'Tsen' Protectors
- Buddhist Worldly Protectors Main Page
- Confusions: Tsiu Marpo, Dorje Dragtsen, Kache Marpo, Example 1
Video: Dorje Setrab
Dorje Setrab: said to be a worldly deity brought from India to Tibet by Ngog Legpai Sherab. It is also possible that Setrab is an indigenous daemon, spirit, local god of Tibet, subjugated by Padmasambhava and appointed as a guardian of the Buddhist religion. Again, Setrab is believed by some to be an emanation of Amitabha Buddha and the wrathful form of Shangpa Karpo (the white Brahma).
Dorje Setrab is claimed as the special protector of Sangpu Neutog Monastery of the early Kadam Tradition founded by Dromton. Sangpu Neutog Monastery (gsang phu ne'u thog) was founded by Ngog Legpai Sherab in 1071/72. The Fifth Dalai Lama had some interesting thoughts on the identity, literature and cult of Setrab with regard to Sangphu (see below).
At the Dragyab monastery of East Tibet Dorje Setrab is regarded as a special protector ranked among the wisdom protectors of Tantric Buddhism. Most other traditions of Tibet rank Setrab as a worldly protector.
Fearsome in appearance, red in colour, he holds upraised in the right hand a red stick topped with a skull. The left hand holds a lasso at the waist above a quiver of arrows and a bow in a leopard skin pouch. Seated atop a brown horse, he is completely surrounded by the burning flames of wisdom fire.
Dorje Setrab is most often confused in appearance with Tsiu Marpo. They both have a warrior appearance, red in colour and ride a horse. The important difference between the two is that Setrab holds a wooden stick in the upraised right hand and Tsiu Marpo holds a spear in the right hand. Setrab typically has a rooster depicted in a painted composition, often following behind the horse. Tsiu Marpo typically has a red dog in the composition also following behind the horse.
Database Search: All Dorje Setrab Images
Jeff Watt 10-2000 [updated 5-2014, 1-2017, 4-2017, 1-2020, 1-2021]