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Tibet

Ushnishavijaya

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Object Details

Culture

Tibet

Date

Late 17th century

Medium

Gilt bronze with pigments, inlaid with turquoise and coral

Dimensions

7 1/2 x 6 inches (19.1 x 15.2 cm)

Credit Line

Museum Purchase from funds made available by Deane Malott

Object
Number

61.052

According to Buddhist scriptures, soon after attaining enlightenment the Buddha manifested thirty-tw(…)

According to Buddhist scriptures, soon after attaining enlightenment the Buddha manifested thirty-two major and eight minor characteristics. One of these features was the ushnisha, a cranial protuberance that served as a physical reminder of his heightened intelligence. A feminine deity of Tibetan Buddhism, Ushnishavijaya is the deification of this distinctive mark of the Buddha. Her name means “victorious goddess of the Ushnisha,” a title referring to her exceptional intelligence.Here, she is seated in a meditative pose, with both legs folded and the soles of her feet visible. She has three heads, each manifesting a third eye and showing a sweet and benign expression. Each of her eight hands is either in the form of a mudra (a gesture) that symbolizes forces of nature and the nature and function of the deity, or holds an implement representing her spiritual powers.

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