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Superb Large & Double Sided Tibetan Buddhist Tsakli Paintings 16th-17th Century Tibet

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Collection No. TB-2240
Size 18cm x 15cm Each
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A Collection of 31 Superb Large & Double Sided Tsakli Paintings from Tibet 16th-17th Century. 

This Collection of 31 Tsakli Paintings or Buddhist Teaching Cards is from Tibet. Dating from the 16th-17th Century, each card is a relatively large size at 18cm x 15cm other Tsakli Paintings that I have in my collection are mostly 12cm x 8cm in size.

These are the most beautiful set of Tsakli Paintings I have ever owned; the front of the paintings are finely painted in polychrome pigments depicting different Wrathful Deities & Bardo Deities but the back of each painting has a second remarkable painting used when teaching novice monks about the deities and their attributions.

Buddhist teaching is not something learned from books, although books certainly play a part in reinforcing what one has already learned. The prime way of learning in Tibetan & Mongolian Buddhism is through a master’s words. A common sentiment in those lands is that, without a fully qualified master to transmit them, the Buddha’s teachings may well never have existed.

In learning the many complex rituals involving sometimes hundreds of deity forms, their names, iconography, secret syllables, and so on, a student must have a teacher who almost always transmits this information orally. As an aid to memory, especially where complex deities are to be learned, small paintings called Tsakli representing these myriad forms are shown by the master to the students, and the details, often found on the back of each card, are read aloud by the teacher with the intention that the student retains the details in their memory.

Due to their constant use, it is extremely rare to find any that pre-date the 17th century, although there do exist Tsakli dating to the 13th century. When a deity form has been fixed in the mind and one has embarked on the path of Buddhist tantra, at a certain stage one is expected to select a tutelary deity; that is, a deity that is core to one’s heart practice. This deity then becomes the focus of one being, and it is not unusual for both monks and laypeople to spend a great deal of money commissioning a large painting of such deities. These scroll paintings are known as Thangkas

Provenance: The Todd Barlin Collection of Tibetan and Mongolian Buddhist Art & Asian Art

Exhibited:  The Art of Compassion: Buddhist Art from The Todd Barlin Collection. Sydney Australia 2018. Catalogue written By Dr David Templeman


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