Dharmapala Thangka CentreSchool of Thangka Painting


Tibetan Iconography

The lion faced Dakini Simhamukha

Simhamukha [= 'genius spirit'] is regarded as one of the principal fierce manifestations of Padmasambhava. As such, she is connected with many ceremonies of the Dzogchen tradition. A fierce dakini, she is also one of the Bardo Thödol's Phramenma; a group of female deities most likely of Bön origin.

The Lion-Faced Dakini is is shown here dancing in the ardhaparyankasana pose. Her left foot trampling a prostrate human figure. She holds a vajra chopper [Sanskrit: "karttrika", Tib. "grig-gug"] in her right hand and a skull bowl in her left hand. She wears a human skin on her shoulders and holds a khatvanga staff [Sanskrit: "khatvanga", tib. "kha-tvam-ga"], with her left arm.

The terrific goddess is surrounded by tongues of flame and is decorsted with a long garland of severed human heads./p>