Chakrasamvara: Syzygy as the paired opposites

Yab Yum, Chakrasamvara & Vajravarahi, Tibet, c. 15th Century, The Nasli and Alice Heeramaneck Collection, US Public Domain
Chakrasamvara, Tibet, c. 15th Century, The Nasli and Alice Heeramaneck Collection, US Public Domain

In the above image, we see a mandala image from 15th Century Tibetan Buddhism. The central deity in the mandala is Samvara. Samvara is considered the image of “Supreme Bliss” [1]. He is blue in color, with twelve arms, and four faces. He embraces Vajravārāhī, who is red in color. Vajravārāhī means the “”The Diamond Sow” [2]. In Tibetan Buddhism, the syzygy is called Yab-Yum, as metaphor of the union of bliss and emptiness.

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Immanence as divine play

Immanence is an insight of philosophers, mystics, and sadhus alike: a realization that all of our efforts at transcendence are mere preparations for immanence.

Transcendence prepares us for an immanent turn, when we shift our gaze from fantasies of the ‘beyond’ and realize the truth of a divinity which saturates life. This immanent turn is available as we must move beyond the dualities inherent in thought and open to a world of multiplicity, possibility, and potential. It is an opening which leads us to the insight that the divisions we hold between sacred and profane, between good and evil, between one god and another, are but root illusions.

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