In Mahayana Buddhism, Tibetan Buddhism, Newari Buddhism, and other Buddhism Teachings, Bodhisattva Manjushree is one important ironic figure known as Bodhisattva of Great Wisdom. In Sanskrit, Bodhisattva is known as “Prajna” which means “Gentle Glory” Bodhisattva Manjushree is also worshipped as Meditational Deity in Esoteric Buddhism. According to Aranikosociety, Bodhisattva Manjushree is considered as the propounder of Mahayana School of Buddhist Philosophy known as the origin of Saddharmapundarika and Prajnaparamita. Therefore, Lord Manjushree is regarded as Lord of great wisdom and knowledge in Nepal, China, Tibet, and other parts of the world.
Bodhisattva Manjushree was born at Wu Tai Mountain Located in the North-east part of the Sanxi Province of China. The birth of Bodhisattva Manjushree appears at the earliest scriptural at Wu Tai Mountain in the chapter on the abodes of Bodhisattvas. Bodhisattva Manjushree is worshipped as an important figure by two nations- Nepal and China since he is believed to bestow blessings to the people of two countries equally. In Nepal, Bodhisattva Manjushreee is worshipped as the creator of Kathmandu valley from a Lake.
Bodhisattva in Different Languages
文殊菩薩 ( Monju Bosatsu )
문수보살 ( Munsu Bosal )
Boddhisattva Manjushri Appearance
Bodhisattva Manjushree is represented as male Bodhisattva with a flaming sword in his right hand. The right-hand flaming sword represents the realization of transcendent wisdom which cuts down ignorance and duality. On the other hand, he holds a Lotus represents great wisdom. In Chinese and Japanese Buddhist arts, the sword is sometimes replaced as a Ruyi scepter in Vimalakirti Sutra. Most of the painting and Statues represent Manjushree riding a blue lion or sitting in the Skin of the Lion as the use of wisdom to the mind.
Bodhisattva Manjushree represents on Different Buddhism Teaching
There are mainly three popular Buddhism teaching (School of Buddhism). Other teachings are derived from these teachings. Here is Bodhisattva Manjushree represents different Buddhist teachings.
Bodhisattva Manjushree and Mahayana Buddhism
According to various Historical scriptures, Lord Manjushree is regarded as the god to the practice of Mahayana Buddhism and is mostly practiced in various countries such as China, Tibet, Korea, Mongolia, and Japan. Lord Manjushree is referred to in early Mahayana sutras such as prajnaparamita sutras. Mahayana Buddhism is also known as the Great vehicle. Mahayana Buddhism is known to be an outcome of his meditation and is worshipped as the revered deity of Knowledge and Wisdom.
Bodhisattva Manjushree and Vajrayana Buddhism
According to Vajrayana Buddhism, Bodhisattva Manjushree is regarded as a meditational Deity who fully considered the enlightened Buddha. In Vajrayana Buddhism, He is also known as Kriya or Charya Tantra which explains himself as God with great wisdom, Knowledge, memory, Language, Skills and so on.
Bodhisattva Manjushree and Newari Buddhism (Newar Buddhism)
Newar Buddhism is the form of Vajrayana Buddhism practiced in Kathmandu valley, Nepal by the local Newar group of people. It has developed unique socio-religious elements which include non-monastic Buddhist society based on the Newar caste system and Patrilineality. Majushree is worshipped by Newar Buddhist as the creator of Kathmandu valley from a giant lake.
Bodhisattva Manjushree in different countries.
Bodhisattva Manjushree is one important deity recognize by various countries by various stories. Check out how important is Bodhisattva Manjushree in different countries.
Bodhisattva Manjushree in China
Manjushree in China is known as Wen Shu. Bodhisattva Manjushree was born at Wu Tai Mountain located in the North-east part of the Sanxi Province of China. Therefore, Wu Tai Mountain is one fo the four sacred mountains of China for Chinese Buddhists to be his Bpodhimanda. In China, Bodhisattva Manjushree is called as one of the four great Bodhisattvas and is paired with Bodhisattva Samantabhadra. The other three important bodhisattvas are Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara (Karuna Maya), Bodhisattva Ksitigarbha, Bodhisattva Samantabhadra.
In Tibetan Buddhist, Bodhisattva Manjushree is displayed in several Tantric forms. Some of the manifestations or displayed in the form of Yamantaka ( God of Death-terminator of Death ‘Yama’), Namasangiti, Arapacana Manjushree, Guhya-Manjushree, Manjuswari, Guhya-Manjuvajra, and other. Also, Bodhisattva Manjushree is worshipped as great trinity Bodhisattva with Avalokiteshvara and Vajrapani.
Manjushree History in Nepal
According to Swayambhu Purana, Kathmandu was a lake with a huge lotus in the middle of the lake. During his meditation, he found the lake with a holy lotus in the middle of the lake. Therefore, he traveled from Wu Tai mountain to the Kathmandu valley to worship the huge lotus that emitted radiance. Bodhisattva cut the gorge at Chovar and drain the water from the lake. The lotus flower is believed to reside on the top of the mountain. Later the Lotus flower becomes the Swayambhu Stupa (Maha Chaitya) and the Plant becomes a mountain. Later Bodhisattva creates a suitable valley for settlement.
Bodhisattva Manjushree Indonesia
Manjushree is known as a prominent deity revered by the Sailendra Dynasty during the eighth century. The Kelurak inscription and Manjushrigraha inscription mentioned the construction of grand Prasada named Vajrasana Manjusrigrha (Vajra House of Manjushree) which is at present known as Sewa Temple. It is known as the second-largest temple after Borobudur.
Bodhisattva Manjushree in Japan
Bodhisattva Manjushree is known as Monju in Japan which was introduced by Ennin during 864 AD– a Japanese monk who traveled Wu Tai Mountain which is known as the central of Manjushree Teachings. Therefore, they mostly learn about Mahayana Buddhism which explains Manjushree as great wisdom with an enlightened mind.
Bodhisattva Manjushree Mantra
Om Ah Ra Pa Tsa Na Dhin
Om Ah Ra Pa Tsa Na Dhin is the associated with Bodhisattva Manjushree Mantra. It does not have an easy literal English Translation. Therefore, each Syllables of the mantra defines the following meanings.
Om – Not only can Om be considered to be the essence of the five wisdoms, but it can also be reflective of an awareness of the surrounding universe. It is used at the start of many mantras and should be considered to mean “My mind and heart are open to the truths that follow.”The Mantra of Bodhisattva Manjushree
A – Is often in references to the ideal that the essence of nature is unproduced.
Ra – This is often reflective of the ideal that all things are free from defilements.
Pa – This leads to the ideal that all dharmas have been “expounded in the supreme sense.”
Ca – Is often in reference to the ideal that the arising and cessation of things cannot be wholly understood because, in reality, there is no arising and cessation to start with.
Na – This is representative of the belief that while the names for things may change, the true nature of them cannot be changed.
Dhih – This is often defined with the meaning of “prayer” or “understanding” or “reflection.”
Bodhisattva Manjushree Dance
Bodhisattva Manjushree Dance is a part of Charya Nritya (Dance) regarded as the oldest classical dance in Nepal followed by Newar Buddhist especially the Newari people in Kathmandu valley. Bodhisattva Manjushree is known for as “God of Wisdom” and helps to create Kathmandu valley by draining the water of valley and for the recognition of his deeds, Bodhisattva Manjushree dance is represented and still prevailing in Nepal.
Images of Bodhisattva Manjushree
Statues of Bodhisattva Manjushree
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Thangkas of Bodhisattva Manjushree
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Sunil,(n.d). Manjushree Going to Wu Tai Shan. From Arniko Society. Retrieved From: https://www.arnikosociety.com.np/manjushri.php
Chitrakar A.(2013). Manjushree. From ECS Nepal. Retrieved from: http://ecs.com.np/heritage-tale/manjushree
Sadiksha, (7 Oct, 2018). All about Manjushree Bodhsattva- Meaning, Iconography and Belief. From: mandalas.life. Retrieved from:https://mandalas.life/2018/all-about-manjushri-bodhisattva/
Roughguides, (n.d). The ledgend of Manjushree. From www.roughguides.com. Retrieved from: https://www.roughguides.com/destinations/asia/nepal/kathmandu-and-patan/west-of-the-bishnumati/the-legend-of-manjushri/
Bajracharya, D. Manjushree Dance in Surrey, BC. From Youtube.com. Retrieved from: https://youtu.be/KJFcVNemTY8?t=24
Dharmachakra Wheel of the Dharma, (Mar 17, 2016). Story of manjushree Bodhisattva. A poor women begging for food. From www.youtube.com. Retrieved from:https://youtu.be/aYGWRqtSuac?t=160