Green Tara

This beautiful Green Tara Thanka was painted by New Zealand artist Ella Brewer.

The Green Tara is the principle of active compassion. She is ready to come to your aid in all manner of crises and emergencies. In situations that are overwhelming, complex, difficult, horrible, or stuck, she's the one you call on. She can help you overcome dangers, fears, and anxieties.

Some people describe Buddhism not as a religion, but as a system of mind training, with kindness at its heart. We know that mindfulness meditation (a buddhist tradition) can combat depression and improve physical health and quality of life in very real ways. The many Buddhist deities, like the Tibetan Green Tara, are not gods and goddesses per se; that is, they aren't conceived of only as autonomous entities "out there" somewhere - nor are they mere psychological entities existing only as archetypes in our own minds. I have heard them described as emanations, and this idea makes intuitive sense to me. They are like holographs of the best of our own possibilities, what has been or can be in our hearts and spirits. Working with these deities, we are working with powers and possibilities that are both within us and outside of us. In traditional Tibetan deity practice, the practitioner may spend years perfecting the ability to visualize the deity, in five senses and three dimensions. I am in awe of this kind of devotion to both creating and internalizing beauty and compassion. My own considerably simpler, more humble practice is just to open my heart, in meditation, to the idea embodied by the beautiful deity-emanation. You can also try a simple mantra practice: Tara's mantra is Om tare tu tare ture soha.

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Skulleigh said...

"They are like holographs of the best of our own possibilities, what has been or can be in our hearts and spirits."

I love that description! I am writing that down right now!

Madame One Tree said...



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