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The Rubin Research

  • Art of the Week
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Handheld Prayer Wheel
November 8, 2019

Stupas came to symbolize the Buddha’s enlightened body and mind. Prayer wheels, ritual implements containing mantras that are believed to be released as the wheel turns, are also associated with relics.. [...]

Vajra
June 14, 2019

The vajra is the essential symbol of the secret tantric path in Buddhism, which is known as the Vajrayana, the vajra vehicle [...]

Phakpa Lokeshvara of Lhasa
May 31, 2019

Tibet’s history has been shaped by its national patron deity Avalokiteshvara, the bodhisattva of compassion [...]

Ritual Peg, Kila
January 18, 2019

This exquisitely crafted three-sided ritual dagger was never used in battle, but was still an effective weapon in esoteric meditation and ritual practices [...]

Prayer Beads
September 21, 2018

In Tibetan Buddhism prayer beads are used to count the recitations of prayers and devotional invocations (mantras), a process that allows the practitioner to accumulate merit [...]

Ritual Ewer
December 13, 2017

Ewers such as this are used for pouring liquid offerings during daily offerings, initiation ceremonies, and other rituals. This ewer could have been part of a monastic setting or [...]

Ritual Hammer
December 6, 2017

This hammer, finely worked in the difficult damascene technique of inlaying gold and silver decoration, draws on an archaic vocabulary of Chinese designs and an ancient seal-script style reign mark that records its creation in the workshops of the early fifteenth-century Ming-dynasty emperor [...]

Prayer Beads
November 29, 2017

In Tibetan Buddhism prayer beads are used to count the recitations of prayers and devotional invocations (mantras), a process that allows the practitioner to accumulate merit [...]

Amulet Box (Gau)
October 18, 2017

This amulet box (gau) would have been filled with religious contents to protect the wearer as well as serve as a portable shrine. The central window of such an amulet usually reveals [...]

Magzor Gyalmo, Queen Who Repels Armies
October 4, 2017

Magzor Gyalmo (Mongolian: Chog tegulder okin tngri), Queen Who Repels Armies, is a wrathful emanation of the goddess Sarasvati and the special protector of the Dalai Lamas [...]

Hindu Festival Banner
August 9, 2017

This double-sided banner shows two matrika, mother goddesses that represent the female counterparts of the great Hindu gods and the embodiments of those gods’ energies[...]

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