Tsang Nyön Heruka (1452-1507) – The "Madman of Tsang"
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ABS 311

 Code: ABS 311

  Country: Tibet


  Date: 1500 - 1600

  Dimensions in cm WxHxD: 17.2 x 26 x 13.3

  Materials: Gilt copper

Tsang Nyön Heruka (1452-1507) – The "Madman of Tsang" 

Of powerful and massive build, Tsang Nyön Heruka, the "Madman of Tsang", appears here as a naked yogi, "adorned with bone ornaments", which is the literal translation of one of his epithets. Pot-bellied and wearing only a loincloth, he is seated in the attitude of royal ease on an antelope skin placed upon a lotus seat. In addition to his moustache and goatee, he wears his long hair braided into an intricate topknot. With a dynamic gesture, he brandishes a diamond sceptre towards heaven with his right hand, while cradling a scull cup in his left. His wide-open eyes cast an intense and fearless gaze, characteristic of mad yogis. A long inscription on the back of the base states that the work was made according to the wishes of Götsang Repa (1482-1559), who was a direct disciple, which is an indication that it was produced very close to the life of the master.

A major practitioner of the Kagyü school, Tsang Nyön is the author of the most famous hagiography of the saint and poet Milarepa (1040-1123), "The Life" and "The Hundred Thousand Songs", which are considered to be true masterpieces and are one of the greatest successes of Tibetan literature.