Padmasambhava

Padmasambhava

Also known as:

Guru Rinpoche; Padmakara

Classification:

Buddha; Yidam

Padmasambhava—scholar, magician, adept, and Buddha—was born from a lotus flower. He traveled widely learning occult secrets. He lived in a charnel field for five years while tutored by Dakinis who taught him mystic, Tantric secrets.

Padmasambhava traveled to Tibet where he battled and subdued Bon spirits one by one, forcing them to agree to become guardians of Tibetan Buddhism. He lived in Tibet for fifty-five years. He left riding a winged blue horse, accompanied by an entourage of spirits. His consort, Yeshe Sogyel, a Dakini and Buddha, remained behind, entrusted to continue his spiritual mission and to hide his books and Buddhist treasures. An unknown number remain hidden in Tibet to be revealed when the time is right. Padmasambhava lives on a copper mountain in the middle of the sea together with devotees, magicians, and spiritual adepts, including those destined to someday recover his books.

Iconography:

Padmasambhava is a frequent subject of Thangka paintings. He is often portrayed between his two consorts.

Attributes:

Lightning bolt, skull

Consorts: Mandarava, Yeshe Sogyel

Sacred sites:

Among the many Himalayan locations associated with Padmasambhava:

• His cave in Yerpa, Tibet

• Bhutan’s Tiger’s Nest Monastery (Taktshang), so called because Padmasambhava flew there on the back of Yeshe Sogyel, who transformed into a flying tigress

Time:

On the tenth day of each waxing moon, Padmasambhava returns to his old hermit’s cave on Mount Tise. At this time he will bless anyone who calls out his name.

Mantra: OM AH HUM VAJRA GURU PADMA SIDHI HUM

See Also:

Bon Spirits; Buddha; Dakini; Eight Dharma Protectors; Palden Lhamo; Vajra and the Glossary entry for Mantra

Occult World

Source:

Encyclopedia of Spirits: The Ultimate Guide to the Magic of Fairies, Genies, Demons, Ghosts, Gods & Goddesses– Written by Judika Illes Copyright © 2009 by Judika Illes.