Tsongkhapa & Friends at a disco???
I always like to do things that are unconventional or have different from the norm… especially when being different make things stand out better to attract people to the Dharma, or to practice better and to plant Dharma seeds in many beings.
These beautiful images are from Paul at Kechara Discovery and they are each 3 feet or 1 meter in height. They are in the audience room of Tsem Ladrang Kuala Lumpur for our private worship.
You can also see similar beautiful statues in Kechara Paradise Outlets. My passion for Buddha statues has been a lifelong love ever since I was very young. I love for people to have them as they bring so much benefit to people, and even by just looking at a Buddha image, the seed of enlightenment is planted into their mind stream. This is why I love making Buddha statues very beautiful and attractive. Having beautiful, iconographically correct Buddha images are essential part of our daily meditation and prayers to help in of visualisation and focus. These Buddhas are so beautiful, glamorous, shiny and very elegant. They are residing in Tsem Ladrang and I am sure Bobby Trendy in Los Angeles would love them!
The traditional Gelugpa altar set up usually consist of three main Buddhas; Buddha Shakyamuni on the far left – representing the original Buddha that appeared in our aeon before Lama Tsongkhapa. Next is Lama Tsongkhapa who sits in the middle as the main Buddha of our lineage and finally Green Tara, for the fulfilment of all our wishes, activities and spiritual growth.
In the Tibetan tradition, Buddha statues are usually beautified and adorned with many precious stones such as turquoise, corals, pearls, and Dzi beads which are gems that can be found in the Himalayan region. However, in today’s modern times, we have an abundance and a variety of beautifully carved stones and jewels, hence we can be more creative with our offerings to the Buddhas. This is what inspired the creation of these beautiful ‘bling-bling’ altar set up, where the Buddhas are being adorned with Swarovski crystals.
The reasons for offering up a lot of beautiful jewels on to our Buddhas and altar is because offerings of such richness to the Buddhas create the causes for us to receive abundant resources and support. There are many forms of resources, not just financial but also physical resources, which are very much needed, especially when we wish to build a beneficial Dharma institution like Kechara Forest Retreat, to preserve and spread the holy Buddhadharma to benefit many. ‘Give to receive’ that is the universal law. Therefore, the more we give, the more we shall receive as it creates the causes for this positive energy. It also helps us to cut down our miserly attitude, which is the root cause for us to not have resources and to be in poverty.
A Buddha’s form is made up of three aeons of culmination of merits due to the practice of restricting negativities of the body, speech and mind life after life. Therefore, to see a Buddha, to make offerings to a Buddha, to prostrate to a Buddha and to create Buddha images put the imprints in our mind to have such a situation in which we create the causes to have a Buddha’s body.
Every action we do towards the Buddha image, such as offering flowers to the Buddha, beautifying, painting, sponsoring, or prostrating to a Buddha image plants the seeds of what the Buddha represent in us, as well as the seeds for us to achieve the same enlightened state, just like the Buddha. In short, it is very powerful to have a Buddha image in our house because we are connecting to an outer being who has achieved full enlightenment, and at the same time we are connected to our own inner being that has the potential to achieve this same state of enlightenment. The Buddha said that whether we make offering to him or to an image of him, the merits are exactly the same when it is done with a good motivation. Hence, it is very powerful and very good for everyone to have a beautiful Buddha statue or image on our shrine. Therefore, we should always make abundant offerings to the Buddhas, to the best of our ability. We should offer up the best we can afford, as our enlightenment is priceless. So, by offering up diamond-like crystals onto the Buddha’s body is an expression of our value of the preciousness of what the Buddha represents and our wish to achieve the same, which is full enlightenment.
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