Kwan Yin

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The Kwan Yin connection to Ptsan Win, the Lakota name for White Buffalo Calf Woman


When I was growing up there were no religious items in our home except a statue of Kwan Yin, the Goddess of Mercy and Hoti, god of good luck. These were purely decorative pieces. My parents at the time were not religious. Now I find Kwan Yin's merciful nature in Christ Josephine as a new aspect for the Return of White Buffalo Calf Woman.


Ptsan Win has become one with Kwan Yin in Her mercy and forgiveness as Christ Josephine




 -adapted from an essay by Bethleen Cole


Quan Yin is one of the most universally beloved of deities in the Buddhist tradition. Also known as Kuan Yin, Quan'Am (Vietnam), Kannon (Japan), and Kanin (Bali), She is the embodiment of compassionate loving kindness. As the Bodhisattva of Compassion, She hears the cries of all beings. Quan Yin enjoys a strong resonance with the Christian Mary, the Mother of Jesus, and the Tibetan goddess Tara.

In many images She is depicted carrying the pearls of illumination. Often Quan Yin is shown pouring a stream of healing water, the "Water of Life," from a small vase. With this water devotees and all living things are blessed with physical and spiritual peace. She holds a sheaf of ripe rice or a bowl of rice seed as a metaphor for fertility and sustenance. The dragon, an ancient symbol for high spirituality, wisdom, strength, and divine powers of transformation, is a common motif found in combination with the Goddess of Mercy.

Quan Yin, as a true Enlightened One, or Bodhisattva, vowed to remain in the earthly realms and not enter the heavenly worlds until all other living things have completed their own enlightenment and thus become liberated from the pain-filled cycle of birth, death, and rebirth.

There are numerous legends that recount the miracles which Quan Yin performs to help those who call on Her. Like Artemis, She is a virgin Goddess who protects women, offers them a religious life as an alternative to marriage, and grants children to those who desire them.

The Goddess of Mercy is unique among the heavenly hierarchy in that She is so utterly free from pride or vengefulness that She remains reluctant to punish even those to whom a severe lesson might be appropriate. Individuals who could be sentenced to dreadful penance in other systems can attain rebirth and renewal by simply calling upon Her graces with utter and absolute sincerity. It is said that, even for one kneeling beneath the executioner's sword already raised to strike, a single heartfelt cry to Bodhisattva Quan Yin will cause the blade to fall shattered to the ground.

The many stories and anecdotes featuring this Goddess serve to convey the idea of an enlightened being who embodies the attributes of an all pervasive, all consuming, unwavering loving compassion and who is accessible to everyone. Quan Yin counsels us by Her actions to cultivate within ourselves those particular refined qualities that all beings are said to naturally possess in some vestigial form.

Contemplating the Goddess of Mercy involves little dogma or ritual. The simplicity of this gentle being and Her standards tends to lead Her devotees towards becoming more compassionate and loving themselves. A deep sense of service to all fellow beings naturally follows any devotion to the Goddess.."


More on Kwan Yin (Kuan Yin, Quan Yin)..


"Why is this bodhisattva popular in so many Chinese families? It may be because Kuan Yin is represented as a female with an appearance that embraces the qualities of compassion and motherly love. In addition, because many Buddhist scriptures state that one can invoke Kuan Yin's assistance by simply calling out her name, people feel that this bodhisattva is very approachable.

According to the Huayen Sutra (Buddha-vatamsaka-mahavaipulya Sutra), Kuan Yin uses all kinds of ways to attract people: she makes gifts, uses words of love, and transforms herself into persons like those that she deals with. The "Universal Gateway" chapter in the Lotus Sutra lists thirty-two typical forms in which Kuan Yin may appear. For instance, if a boy or girl is about to gain some enlightenment, Kuan Yin transforms herself into a boy or a girl to teach the child. If a monk is about to attain some enlightenment, Kuan Yin transforms herself into a monk. In short, she can appear as a monk, a nun, a king, a minister, a celestial being, or a normal person like you and me. The purpose of such transformations is to make people feel close to her and willing to listen to her words.

"I am cultivating this method of great compassion and hope to save all living beings," Kuan Yin said. "Any living being who calls my name or sees me will be free from all fear and danger. I will activate that being's spiritual awareness and maintain it forever."

In other words, this bodhisattva's main attraction for people lies in her efforts to eliminate suffering and to make people live in peace and harmony. This kind of immediate benefit and the ability to receive protection or help simply by calling the bodhisattva's name, similar to children receiving an instant reply when calling their mother, have contributed to Kuan Yin's great popularity."


Kwan Yin's earthly name is Miao Shan (Wondrously Kind One). Legend has it Miao Shan descended into hell and there, by the power of her unsullied purity, compelled its ruler to release every one of the shivering wretches delivered for punishment. In the Miao Shan legends Kwan Yin acts like Ishtar-Jesus descending into Hell to release the wretches there. Miao Shan's history also mirrors many Catholic Saints lives, e.g., St. Barbara, patron saint of the city where I was born. Ptsan Win is Kwan Yin!





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