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date: 18 September 2021

Avalokiteśvara: The Bodhisattva of Compassionlocked

Avalokiteśvara: The Bodhisattva of Compassionlocked

  • Chün-fang YüChün-fang YüColumbia University

Summary

Avalokiteśvara is one of the most famous bodhisattvas in Buddhism. The worship of bodhisattvas (beings of enlightenment) is one of the most distinctive features of Mahāyāna Buddhism. Whereas early or mainstream Buddhism recognizes only two bodhisattvas—the Buddha in his previous lives and Maitreya, the future Buddha—there are a number of bodhisattvas in Mahāyāna to whom one can appeal for help and guidance. Of the many bodhisattvas, Avalokiteśvara is identified specifically as the embodiment of compassion and as such has been worshipped throughout Buddhist Asia.

Subjects

  • Buddhism

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