(Tib: mtshan-brjod), is a special twelve-armed aspect of Manjushri, the
bodhisattva of wisdom, that is of particular importance in the Newar
Buddhist tradition, where he is also regarded as an emanation of
Vairocana Buddha, who appears above his head in this composition.
Namasangiti, meaning Chanting of the Names, is a personification of
the Manjushri Namasangiti Tantra, the textual prayers of which are still
traditionally recited each day at many Buddhist monasteries throughout
the Kathmandu Valley.Namasangiti sits in vajra-posture upon the
moon and sun disc of a pink lotus that arises from a lake. He is golden
or light yellow in complexion, with a peaceful face and twelve arms, and
ne wears the five divine silk garments and eight jeweled ornaments of a
sambhogakaya deity or bodhisattva. With his first pair of hands held in
front of his heart he makes the dharmachakra-mudra or gesture of
teaching. With his second pair of hands resting upon his lap in the
dhyana-mudra of meditative equipoise he supports a blue alms-bowl. With
his third pair of hands he makes the tarpana-mudra or gesture of
offering (sprinkling) in front of his abdomen, with the tips of his
fingers just touching the nectar that fills his alms-bowl. With his
fourth pair of hands he holds Manjushris method or skillful means
attributes of an arrow and bow. With his fifth pair of hands he holds
Manjushris wisdom attributes of a blazing iron sword, and a lotus that
supports a text on the Perfection of Wisdom (Prajnaparamita-sutra).
And with his sixth pair of hands folded together above the crown of his
head he makes the uttarabodhi-mudra or gesture of supreme enlightenment.
His six pairs of hands represent all the enlightened qualities of the
Six Buddha Families, and also the Six Perfections of generosity,
morality, patience, perseverance, concentration, and discriminating
awareness or wisdom.Seated upon a lotus amidst the clouds above
Namasangitis green halo is white Vairocana Buddha, who wears the three
robes of a Buddhist monk and makes the dharmachakra-mudra or
wheel-turning gesture of teaching in front of his heart.
text by Robert Beer