Manjushri and Samantabhadra

In July we talked about the two most prominent bodhisattvas, Kwan Seum Bosal and Ji Jang Bosal, and now we'll look at the other two bodhisattvas mentioned in the Homage to the Three Jewels, Dae Ji Mun Su Sari Bosal and Dae Heang Bo Hyun Bosal. Mun Su Sari Bosal is called Manjushri in Sanskrit, which translates as "He who is noble and gentle." Manjushri is also known as Manjughosha, meaning "sweet-voiced-one" or "gentle-voiced-one." Born out of a golden ray of light that emanated from Shakyamuni's forehead, he is the bodhisattva of wisdom. One of Manjushri's foremost roles is as bodhisattva of poetry, oratory, writing, and all the uses of language. He is depicted as a youth of sixteen in order to show that transcendent wisdom is not a matter of mere experience or years, but a matter of cutting through delusion in this moment.

Mun Su Sari Bosal is depicted in paintings and sculptures with two lotus blossoms around his head and holding the sword of wisdom that cuts through delusion. It is said that his sword has a diamond blade, and that one side of the blade can give life and the other side can take it away. He is also depicted holding a book?the long version of the Prajna Paramita Sutra. His mudra consists of his hands in front of his heart in the teaching gesture. He sits atop an ornate lotus pedestal whose base is decorated with winding vines and cavorting lions, a reference to the lion he sometimes rides.

Dae Heang Bo Hyun Bosal is the Great Action Bodhisattva, a name that reflects his sincere practice of the Ten Great Vows.

He is known in Sanskrit as Samantabhadra, which means Universal Virtue. He usually rides on a six-tusked white elephant. The six tusks represent overcoming attachment to the six senses. They also represent the Six Perfections or Paramitas: generosity, conduct, patience, effort, meditation, and wisdom. Like Mun Su Sari Bosal, Dae Heang Bo Hyun Bosal was an assistant to Shakyamuni Buddha. He embodies all the bodhisattva practices and merits, which must be fulfilled in order to attain Buddhahood. According to the Flower Garland Sutra, bodhisattva practitioners must dedicate all of their efforts to the enlightenment of all sentient beings and sacrifice everything for the welfare of all. In other words...

Just do it!!