Thursday, March 1, 2018

Image with the Wheel of Samsara - gift for Amidaji temple

Wheek of life in the Hondo
Today a precious gift arrived at Amidaji, sent by a Tibetan Dharma friend from Canada – a Bhavachakra or Wheel of Samsaric Existence. The image contains the following elements:

The pig, rooster and snake in the small circle in the middle of the wheel represent the three poisons of ignorance, attachment and aversion.
The second layer represents karma.
The third layer represents the six realms of samsara: hells, pretas (hungry spirits), animals, humans, asuras (demi-gods), gods.
The fierce figure holding the wheel represents impermanence.

In the upper right we can see Shakyamuni Buddha pointing to the image in the upper left, where there is Amida Buddha and His Pure Land. The images of the Two Honored Ones are outside of the Wheel of Samsara, as they are free from the repeated births and deaths. Shakyamuni pointing the finger towards Amida means that escape from Samsara is possible through faith in Him and aspiration to be born in His Pure Land.

As this image will now be part of Amidaji temple, I will integrate it in the Jodo Shinshu context, and  also use it as a tool for teaching basic Buddhist doctrines.

Visitors and members will receive more in depth explanations of each fragment of the Wheel of Samsaric existence. The image was placed in the Hondo (Dharma Hall) of Amidaji.

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