Thanka No. 16
of art: Sman-bris
lived in the 14th century A.D. in the Amdo province of Tibet. He was the
founder and reformer of Gelukpa sect. He is regarded as an incarnation of
Maµjużr˘ who is the embodiment of wisdom. Lord Buddha had prophesied
that Sumati would come to Tibet and diffuse his doctrine there.
obtained the ordination of monkhood in his early age and commenced to
study Buddha's doctrine. He travelled to central Tibet for higher
education on Buddha's teachings. He deeply studied both SŁtra and Tantra
for many years. Randawa was his chief teacher, from whom he specially
learnt Madhyamika philosophy expounded by Nˇgˇrjuna.
composed many books on SŁtra and Tantra in which he tried to explicate
the important and knotted points. He emphasised the doctrine of relativity
as taught by Lord Buddha. The void and relativity are the two different
faces of the same reality which are the ultimate nature of the phenomena. dBu
mai Ltava is the main conception of Gelugpa order founded by
The wisdom of the emptiness is called the central view or dBu mai Ltava. It avoids two extreme views, viz. Nihilism and externalism. Both are the main obstructions in achieving the perfection. These two extreme views can be eradicated through the mediation of dBu mai Ltava.
The central figure is Tsongkhapa who is flanked by his chief disciples, Gyal Tsab and Khasdup respectively on the right and left. He is in preaching posture. He holds a flower in his right hand upon which is placed a sword which signifies the wisdom to destroy the ignorance. He holds again a lotus flower in his left hand upon which is placed the book of wisdom i.e. SŁtra. In the top centre is Maitreya and his two spiritual sons. In the upper left corner is Amitˇbha and Medicinal Buddha in the right. Below left is Amitayu and Gelukpa lama on the right. On the lower right is Vajrabhairava and in the left is protector. In the bottom centre is Yamadaka and on right is Pectse and on the left is Nezer.
Copyright © Central Institute of Buddhist Studies, Choglamsar, Leh, Ladakh, 2001