Monday, May 29, 2006
Invoking the Goddess of Compassion
on this Memorial Day
On this Memorial Day, I thought perhaps I would write on that outrage I have been feeling about the war in Iraq, Afghanistan and the possible attack on Iran soon. Trying to think of a way to express it without being disrespectful to those who have given their lives in the name of freedom was a challenge.
As I searched through the designs I have created down the years for Planet Calamari it occured to me that perhaps it would be best to focus my attention this year on Compassion for those who have been the victims of these wars.....not the outrage I have been feeling towards those who seemd to have caused it.
The Chinese Buddhist pray to the Bodhisattva of Compassion, Kuan Yin (also know as Quan Shi Yin and Kwan Yin.) It is said her name means "She who hears the cries of the world." Some Tibetan Buddhist have a similar Diety and refer to her as Tara. She has always been a favorite of mine. Pehaps she is just a Chinese version of the Virgin Mary that Catholics adore. Although there are many variations on her name and origin, for all she represents Compassion.
Her mantra is 'Om Mani Padme Hum.' (that is, 'Hail the Jewel -or pearl- in the Lotus.') Many believe that she is the female representation of Avalokitesvara, who is the Tibetan and Nepalese God of Compassion. In Asia, statues of Kuan Yin can be found in front of, or on the grounds of, many Buddhist temples.
On this Memorial Day take a moment and ask who ever you believe in to send Compassion for those who need it most during these trying times, and please say a prayer that perhaps soon in the future we will elect a government of people who rule with compassion, integrity and common sense.
For more info on Kuan Yin and how she is represented in other countries click on to wikipedia Kuan Yin
To see the above image of Kuan Yin/ Tara on t-shrits and gifts
please visit Planet Calamari Tara