In this week’s podcast recording, Tracy Cochran illustrates how in moments of darkness, light can still shine through. The source? Unwavering compassion. This idea is exemplified through a mandala painting of the buddhist deity Amoghapasha, which inspires our discussion and meditation.
About the Mindfulness Meditation Podcast
The Rubin Museum of Art presents a weekly meditation session led by a prominent meditation teacher from the New York area, with each session focusing on a specific work of art. This podcast is recorded in front of a live audience, and includes an opening talk, a 20-minute sitting session, and a closing discussion. The guided meditation begins at 16:00.
If you would like to attend Mindfulness Meditation sessions in person or learn more, please visit our website at RubinMuseum.org/meditation.
Amoghapasa, which means unfailing lasso, refers to an unwavering compassion like a lasso that brings all sentient beings out of suffering and into a state of happiness leading to enlightenment. Although the deity Amoghapasha gives this mandala its name, the central deity in this painting is the bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara, the earthly manifestation of the self-born eternal Buddha Amitabha. Avalokiteshvara supremely exemplifies the bodhisattva’s resolve to postpone his own buddhahood until he has helped every sentient being on earth achieve liberation from suffering and the cycle of death and rebirth. He holds in his hands the stems of two lotus blossoms while sitting with his right leg pendant. Amoghapasha is the red four-armed deity below Avalokiteshvara, and the others in the inner circle are Hayagriva, Ekajata, and Bhrkuti. Around the outer circle of the mandala are the Eight Auspicious Emblems, along with four deity figures seated on its edge (clockwise from upper right): Medicine Buddha, Green Tara, Yellow Vasudhara, and Buddha Sakyamuni.
About the Speaker
Tracy Cochran is editorial director of Parabola, a quarterly magazine that for forty years has drawn on the world’s cultural and wisdom traditions to explore the questions that all humans share. She has been a student of meditation and spiritual practices for decades and teaches mindfulness meditation and mindful writing at New York Insight Meditation Center and throughout the greater New York area. In addition to Parabola, her writing has appeared in The New York Times, Psychology Today, O Magazine, New York Magazine, the Boston Review, and many other publications and anthologies. For more information please visit tracycochran.org.