Himalayan Art Resources

Subject: Guardians of the Ten Directions

Buddhist Protectors, Worldly Deities

Subjects, Topics & Types:
- Description
- 75 Lords of Pure Lineage
- Mandalas (below)
- Confusions: Yama
- Others...

The Guardians of the Ten Directions are frequently found as secondary figures in many mandalas of kriya, charya and yoga Tantra classifications. The list and descriptions below are based on the Medicine Buddha mandala. There can be slight differences in description depending on the mandala in which they are appearing. There can also be variations in the names with some substitutions.

List of Guardians:
- Brahma, yellow, holding a wheel, riding a goose.
- Indra, white, holding a vajra, riding an elephant.
- Agni, red, holding a fire pot, riding a goat.
- Yama, blue, holding a stick, riding a buffalo.
- Raksha, black-maroon, holding a sword, riding a zombie.
- Varuna, white, holding a snake lasso, riding a makara.
- Vayu Deva, smoky-coloured, holding a banner, riding a deer.
- Yaksha, yellow, holding a mongoose, riding a horse.
- North-east, Ishana (Shiva), white, holding a trident, riding a buffalo.
- Bhudevi, yellow, holding a vase, riding a sow.

Mandalas that include all or partial Guardians of the Ten Directions:
- Medicine Buddha
- Pancha Raksha Devi
- Sitatapatra
- Abhisambodi Vairochana
- Trailokyavijaya
- Paramadya Samksiptakula
- Paramadya Vajrasattva Paramadya Samksiptakula
- Sarvavid Vairochana
- Chakravarti Guna
- Vajrapani & 10 Dikpala
- Trailokyavijaya & 8 Mahadeva
- Navoshnisha Shakyamuni
- Dharmadhatu Vagishvara
- Samgrhitakula Buddhasamayoga Vajrasattva
- Others...

Jeff Watt 7-2022

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