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Bhrikuti Tara

The concept of Bhrikuti Tara is noted in the earliest text of Arya Manjusrcemulakalpa. Bhrikuti Tara appears along with Arya Tara and a host of other feminine divinities called Vidyarajnis in Chapter 2 named Mandalavidhana Parivarta of that sutra. Bhrikuti is also mentioned in Hevajra Tantra (2nd chapter). Bhrikuti Tara is generally depicted as a companion deity of some forms of Avalokiteshvara viz. Khasarpana, Padmanarteshvara, Amoghpasa, etc. Bhrikuti appears in different forms. When she appears in blue color, Bhrikuti Tara is depicted as three headed and a six armed form. When yellow; she is single faced three eyed and four armed and with frowning eyebrows. Her four hands hold a rosary, a trident, a Kalasa and display Varada Mudra.

Taranatha in his history of Buddhism in India describes a visit of an Upasaka Santivarman from Pundravardhana to the top of the Potala hill, the abode of Avalokiteshvara. It is said that Santivarman once prayed to Bhrikuti to cross a sea and there appeared a girl with a raft and who took him across.

While climbing Potala hill, an Upasaka saw an image of Bhrikuti on the way up the hill. It is also said that Bhrikuti Tara manifested herself as a Nepalese princess in seventh century, who was married to the Tibetan king, Tsrong Tsong Gampo (617 650 A.D.). Bhrikuti Devi was instrumental in diffusing Buddhism in Tibet. Bhrikuti Tara brought the artistic images of Arya Tara, Avalokiteshvara and Akshobhya Buddha into Tibet.

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