Himalayan Art Resources

Buddhist Deity: Kalachakra Iconography

Kalachakra Main Page

Subjects, Topics & Types:
- Kalachakra & Vishvamata
- Heruka Kalachakra
- Vishvamata
- Green Jambhala
- Vajravega
- Kalachakra Related Deities
- Kalachakra: Retinue Figures
- Kalachakra Painting (7th Dalai Lama Set)
- Kalachakra Painting Set, Mongolia
- Mandalas
- Others...

- Kalachakra Painting Masterworks
- Kalachakra & Vishvamata in Art
- A Question About Kalachakra
- Shambhala Kings & Vidyadharas
- Shambhala Pureland

Kalachakra Mandala types according to number of deities:
- 1,620 Deity Mandala
- 722 Deity Mandala
- 500 Deity Mandala (Mitra Gyatsa)
- 73 Deity Mandala
- 36 Deity Mandala
- 32 Deity Mandala
- 25 Deity Mandala
- 23 Deity Mandala
- 19 Deity Mandala
- 13 Deity Mandala
- 9 Deity Mandala
- 2 Deity Mandala (Kalachakra & Consort)
- 1 Deity Mandala (Solitary Kalachakra)
- Others...

Database Search: All Images | Paintings | Sculpture | Mandalas


"...Shri Kalachakra shining forth with stainless light rays of five [colours], with a body blue in colour. Having three necks the central is blue, right red and left white. The main face is black and fierce with bared teeth. The right face is red and desirous. The back face is yellow and in samadhi. The left face is white and very peaceful. Each face has three eyes.

The hair is tied in a tuft [along with] a vishvavajra, crescent moon, and Vajrasattva as a crown, a vajra jewel, vajra earrings, vajra necklace, vajra bracelets, vajra belt, vajra anklets, vajra scarf, vajra mala, and a loose tiger skin skirt.

The first [two] shoulders on the right and left are blue, second red, third white, for a [total] of six [pairs] of shoulders, twelve upper arms and twenty-four hands. The first four [right and left] are black, second four red, third four white. The thumbs of all the hands are yellow, index finger white, middle finger red, ring finger black, and little finger green. The first knuckle is black, second red, third white. All of the fingers are beautiful and radiant.

The first four black right hands hold a vajra, sword, trident and curved knife. The four red [hold] a flaming arrow, vajra hook, a rattling damaru and hammer. The four white [hands hold] a wheel, spear, stick and a battle axe.

The first four black left [hands] hold a vajra bell, shield, katvanga and a skullcup filled with blood. The four red [hold] a bow, vajra lasso, jewel and a white lotus. The four white [hold] a conch, mirror, vajra chain and the four-faced head of Brahma adorned with lotus [flowers].

Above a moon, sun and rahu, standing in a very playful manner, the right red leg is extended atop red Kamadeva having one face and four hands, holding five flower arrows, a bow, lasso and a hook. Under the left white leg is Rudra, white with one face, three eyes and four arms, holding a trident, damaru drum, skullcup and a katvanga. The demon [consorts] Rati and Uma in a woeful [manner] hold the soles [of Kalachakra's feet].

Vishvamata, yellow in colour, embraces [Kalachakra] from the front. The faces, from the right are yellow, white, blue and red, each with three eyes. There are eight arms. The [first] right hands hold a curved knife, hook, a rattling damaru and bead mala. The left [hands hold] a skullcup, lasso, white lotus with eight petals and a jewel. Vajrasattva [appears] as a crown. Adorned with the five mudras. The left leg is extended - standing together with the Bhagavan." (Buton Tamche Kyenpa Rinchen Drub, 1290-1364. dus 'khor sgrub thabs bsdus pa rin po che'i snying po. gsung 'bum rin chen grub [zhol par khang] Volume 5, Pages 163-176. [TBRC W1934])

Jeff Watt [updated 4-2019]

(The images below are only a selection of examples from the links above).