Jain Lotus Mandala

 

Jain Lotus MandalaThis is Jain lotus mandala. According to some authors, it is used as a travelling shrine. The hinged eight petals, each hosting three Tirthankara’s, when closed forms a lotus bud. The ring, you see on one of the petals, holds the petals in place in the closed position. The central part has a Jina in the meditative position.  This is from the Digambara, sky-clad, sect of Jainism. Jain Lotus Mandala closed

Examples of Jain Lotus mandala with four petals also exist. The book on  The Peaceful liberators Jain Art from India by Dr Pratapaditya Pal documents one such example. Studies in Tuluva History and Culture by Dr Gururaja Bhatt has an example of eight-petaled Kamaladala Parasvanath (Plate 413 C).

Use of lotus has several connotations, lotus symbolises heart and lotus flower is a symbol of purity.

Similar Lotus mandalas are used by Hindu and Buddhists faiths as well, especially in the eastern part of the Indian subcontinent (Bihar, Bengal ) and the Himalayan region (Nepal and Tibet).

The example in this blog may not be very old, though it appears to have been used in rituals. I have seen another similar example with a dealer.

The Lotus Mandala is about 18 cm in height in the closed position and when open it measures 25 cm diagonally.Jain Lotus mandala top view

 

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