THE PRIMORDIAL RIGDEN
with The Dharmaraja Dorje Dradul and Shiwa Okar
original size: 76x87″ (193x221cm)
In the beginning of 2010, at The Sakyong Jamgon Mipham Rinpoche’s request, the Artist began preliminary drawings for a second Primordial Rigden thangka painting. Completed for Shambhala Day 2011, the Year of the Iron Hare, this painting was beautifully framed and mounted above the central shrine in the main meditation hall of the Boulder Shambhala Center, Boulder, Colorado USA. The thangka was inscribed with seed syllables by The Sakyong and empowered by The Sakyong and The Sakyong Wangmo during the three day celebrations for Shambhala Day of 2011.
Along with Shakyamuni Buddha at the top center of the composition, The Sakyong asked that there be three primary figures in this thangka. They are; the Primordial Rigden centered, the Vidyadhara Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche as The Dharmaraja Dorje Dradul above in the sky to the Rigden’s right, and Shiwa Okar, Peaceful White Light, above in the sky to the Rigden’s left. Thus, these three figures embodying the Primordial Rigden uncomponded wisdom & compassion, the Dorje Dradul indestructible wisdom teacher and Shiwa Okar principle yidam, mark this thangka’s specific message.
The thangka depicts the Primordial Rigden in a brilliant white and golden embodiment, seated on a white lotus resting on a gold and crystal throne surrounded by the Four Dignities. Appearing beneath spheres of light encircling the Dorje Dradul and Shiwa Okar, two Dragons move through the clouds towards the Primordial Rigden. The powerful Garuda spreads wings out wide, above a fully shining Great Eastern Sun and a banner proclaiming “Profound, Brilliant, Just, Powerful and All-Victorious”, while Tigers and Lions flank the throne of the Primordial Rigden.
The Sakyong remarked on the fine detail in this painting, coupled with a profound quality of luminous spaciousness. The precise traditional proportions combined with contemporary effects give a refined yet powerful and glowing impression to the composition. Embodying the wisdom and compassion of inherent basic goodness, the Rigden’s face shows a serene wakeful presence expressing the brilliance and radiance of enlightened rulership, the magical heart of Shambhala.