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The Buddhist deity Naro Dakini
Place of Origin: Tibet
Date: 1700-1800
Object Name: Thangka
Materials: Ink and colors on cotton
Dimensions: H. 27 3/4 in x W. 18 1/4 in, H. 70.5 cm x W. 46.4 cm (image); H. 55 in x W. 36 in, H. 139.7 cm x W. 91.4 cm (overall)
Credit Line: The Avery Brundage Collection
Department: Himalayan Art
Collection: Painting
Object Number: B60D8+
On Display: No

Description

Label:

Naro Dakini is a bright-red female divinity whose name means “sky-walker.” In this painting she dances victorious over two prostrate bodies that represent negative thought and emotion. She holds her symbolic ritual equipment, a skull cup and a curved knife, and balances a staff on her shoulder.

Naro Dakini received her name because she gave secret teachings to a Buddhist monk named Naropa, whose debating talents earned him a prestigious post as the “guardian of the northern door” at the Buddhist university of Nalanda in northern India. Naropa would later become a key member of Tibet’s Kagyu or “oral tradition” of meditation instruction. Two other Kagyu figures, Marpa the translator and his student Milarepa, sit on either side of Naro Dakini in their meditation caves.


Label:

Naro Dakini is a bright-red female divinity whose name means “sky-walker.” In this painting she dances victorious over two prostrate bodies that represent negative thought and emotion. She holds her symbolic ritual equipment, a skull cup and a curved knife, and balances a staff on her shoulder.

Naro Dakini received her name because she gave secret teachings to a Buddhist monk named Naropa, whose debating talents earned him a prestigious post as the “guardian of the northern door” at the Buddhist university of Nalanda in northern India. Naropa would later become a key member of Tibet’s Kagyu or “oral tradition” of meditation instruction. Two other Kagyu figures, Marpa the translator and his student Milarepa, sit on either side of Naro Dakini in their meditation caves.