Pala India, Mahamaya

13th century, Northern India, Mahamaya, copper alloy, cold gold and pigments, is or was at the gTsug Lakhang in Lhasa, published by Ulrich von Schroeder.

13th century, Northern India, Mahamaya, copper alloy, cold gold and pigments, is or was at the gTsug Lakhang in Lhasa, published by Ulrich von Schroeder.

Mahamaya is  a male deity related to the tantric text  of the same name. He has one head and two arms or four heads and four hands (as above) and may be alone, or with his consort, standing on the left leg or on the right one. He normally holds an arrow in his (broken) top right hand and a skull cup in the lower one (although this example seems to be holding something different, possibly a spoon or a pestle), a bow and a ritual staff in his left hands.

13th-c-india-n-mahamaya-close-up

Each head has three eyes and is adorned with a small tiara, the flaming orange hair stands up in a mitre-like shape. There is a garland of severed heads around his shoulders. He wears a leopard skin dhoti held in place with a belt and stands on a victim over a moon disc, on top of a Pala-style double-lotus base.

 

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