As the embodiment of wisdom-prajñā, Mañjuśrī is often practiced by practitioners for the development of clarity, mental agility, and courage. He holds a flaming sword in his right hand representing the transcendental wisdom which cuts through ignorance and dualistic clinging. In his left hand is thePrajñāpāramitā sūtra atop a lotus. This scripture represents definitive truth and Manjushri’s attainment of ultimate, all-encompassion realization.
According to legend, Kathmandu Valley was once a lake. While resting at Mahamandap, a hill east of Bhaktapur, Manjushri saw a huge lotus emanating bright light at the center of the lake. In order to pay homage to the lotus, he cut a deep gorge, allowing the water to drain out. The place where the lotus flower settled is the site of the Swayambhu stupa, meaning “self-created," a reference to the eternal self-existent flame upon which a stūpa was later built.
As a result, Manjushri became renowned throughout Kathmandu Valley as a great bodhisattva and subjugator of nagas.
In hisPraise to Manjushri, Mipham Rinpoche states:
You are the father of all the buddhas who have gone to bliss,
And the dharmadhātu mother from whom all the noble ones are born,
Yet you appear as the son of the buddhas of past, present and future–
To you who are without equal, I prostrate in devotion!
- 5.5 in by 3 in, 1.3 lb