The Tantric Spiritual Art of Nadean O'Brien

Mandalas by Rampal





"Sacred Pond"

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(acrylic on canvas 36" x 36" embellished with crystals, freshwater pearls, carnelian cabochons, gold leaf and dimensional paint )

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Come in meditation to the serene waters of Sacred Pond for rest and restoration, and let yourself be drawn into the ancient mystery of "Yab Yum" veiled within its depths. Swim effortlessly through earthly troubles with the noble "Nishikigoi" (koi fish bred for color) often referred to as "living jewels" or "swimming flowers." Here they number six, representing Venus rule of love, harmony, spiritual and mental balance, sincerity, truth and enlightenment. They embody beauty and abundance in the natural world, their curious whiskers depicting wisdom.

The many positive attributes associated with Koi and the attendant symbolism have made them popular subjects for oriental works of art for centuries. Eastern religions and legends abound with references to Koi. Eventually, they have become associated with "masculine" qualities and in contemporary tattoo imagery, especially in combination with crashing waterfalls, characterize courage, the ability to attain high goals and the strength to overcome life's difficulties. 

Koi also represent the condition of samsaric beings in the Buddhist sense. Inhabiting the upper level of water and knowing only about water, they are generally oblivious to what is just above. Hence, Koi are a potent symbol for ordinary human awareness. When caught in the confusion and ignorance of our minds, we are like fish without knowledge of the world above water. We are ignorant the potential that is inherent in our nature. And like Koi leaping up the waterfall, a few of us manage to experience the wider reality, often unknowingly and sometimes at great risk to life and limb.

Last but not least, two honorable Japanese Pond Snails descend to the muddy and murky pond bottom to tend the birthplace of the beautiful and pure lotus whose tender buds are emerging to the surface.

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