Thousand Armed Avalokitesvara with Seed Syllable hrih

Thousand-Armed-Avalokitesvara -hrih-1280.jpg

It has been a while, since I designed by own wallpaper.  I learned a few tricks in photoshop, so I kinda over did them here :).

The Wallapaper has the Eleven Headed Thousand Armed Thousand Eyed Avalokiteshvara (ekādaśamukha sahasrabhuja sahasranetra avalokiteśvara – एकादशमुख सहस्रभुज सहस्रनेत्र अवलोकितेश्वर ).  I think this term doesn’t mean He has exactly Thousand Eyes and Arms, it means more or less like “Thousands of” Arms, and “Thousands of Eyes”.

In the Karandavyuha Sutra, Avalokiteshvara enters the Avici hells, to save the beings there. He converts the fire pits into cool refreshing pools, and makes the Avici Naraka – The most Painful and lowliest Hell –  a very nice place !!.  The Guardians report this to Yama. Yama wonders whether the being who had done such a transformation, was “Shiva”, “Vishnu”, a “Rakshasa” or some other supernatural being. When seen through his divine eyes, he finds Avalokiteshvara Bodhisattva Mahasattva there.

He then appears before Avalokiteshvara, he places his head at the feet of avalokiteesvara and worships Him. He utters the following praises on Avalokitesvara:

namo’stvavalokiteśvarāya, maheśvarāya, padmaśriye, varadāya, vaśaṁkarāya, pṛthivīvaralocanakarāya, jagadāśvāsanakarāya, śatasahasrabhujāya, koṭīśatasahasranetrāya, ekādaśaśīrṣāya, vaḍavāmukhaparyantāya,[…]

नमोऽस्त्ववलोकितेश्वराय, महेश्वराय, पद्मश्रिये, वरदाय, वशंकराय, पृथिवीवरलोचनकराय, जगदाश्वासनकराय, शतसहस्रभुजाय, कोटीशतसहस्रनेत्राय, एकादशशीर्षाय, वडवामुखपर्यन्ताय […]

The words in bold reads “Hundred-Thousand-Armed” , “Ten_Million-Hundred-Thousand-Eyed“, “Eleven-Headed

The God of Death, Yama praises Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara as having hundred-thousand-arms and Ten-millions times that amount of Eyes !!! But his heads seems to be constant – always counting to Eleven 🙂

Surrounding the Vishvarupa (विश्वरूप – Great Form) of Avalokitesvara, his seed syllable hrīḥ – ह्रीः  is placed around the four corners, in four different scripts.  All those play a very important role in Mahayana Buddhism.

BTW, I have written more abou the Seed Syllable hrIH here: Seed  Syllable of Great Compassion in Lotus .

Top Left – hrīḥ in Siddham Script

Siddham script is a very important script in Sino-Japanese Buddhism. It is  used to write Sanskrit Mantra/Dharanis and Mandalas.

Top Right – hrīḥ in Tibetan Script

Mantras/Mandalas/Yantras/Chakaras in Tibetan Buddhism are all inscribed in Tibetan Script

Bottom Left – hrīḥ in Ranjana/Lantsa Script.

Ranjana or Lantsa is an ornamental script, used in Tibet and Nepal regions. It is also used to inscribe Mantras. Tibet once had original sanskrit sutras written in Ranjana, but they were desotroyed during the cultural Revolution 😦

It was quite difficult to find the hrIH in Ranjana, as there is no proper ranjana font. It was also difficult to find out the shape of hrIH in Ranjana.  Visible Mantra had one form of hrIH in Ranjana, but I couldn’t make this form using the incomplete Ranjana font, that I had.  A bit of googling, I got this – Unicode Proposal for Ranjana Script. This had a form of <<hra>>, from which I could create using the font. From <<hra>> adding vowel markers to create <<hrii.h>> was relatively easy.

Bottom Left – hrīḥ in Devanagari Script.

I have nothing more to add about Devanagari Script. It has become a standard script for Sanskrit these days. For its connection with Mahayana Buddhism, I guess it is used to write Sutra/Mantras/Dharanis in Newari Buddhism in Nepal.

The Image credits go here:

Direct Image link:

Hope to learn a few more Photoshop tricks and come up with better Wallpapers 🙂


~ by Vinodh on June 15, 2009.

3 Responses to “Thousand Armed Avalokitesvara with Seed Syllable hrih”

  1. share you some great wallpapers

  2. Thanks. They look absolutely nice 🙂

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