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Ksitigarbha Bodhisattva, Lord of the Underworld

Tags: god | Ksitigarbha Bodhisattva | print

Ksitigarbha Bodhisattva is commonly called Lord of the Underworld. He was once instructed by Buddha to save the six realms of existence. Therefore, he went to hell to save all creatures. He rules with King Yama of the Ten Halls, and judges whether a man was good or evil in life. The good would be sent to heaven, the evil cast into hell, and those who died a violent death would be reincarnated. Ksitigarbha Bodhisattva has a mount, the spiritual beast “sunatha-sadhukam,” which apparently has a keen ear and is able to distinguish between good and evil in the mortal world. In the picture, Ksitigarbha Bodhisattva is holding his earthen bowl in the left hand and tin staff in the right hand. He sits on a lotus throne; in attendance on his sides are a long-bearded old man and a monk. The old man is Shanhui Dashi (Fu Dashi).

27 x19 cm

National Museum of History