"the kapāla (skull-cup) and the khaṭvānga (trident) are considered to be two of the greatest substances in the Vajrayana" ~Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche~"
A marvelours hand crafted iron Khatvanga with vajra top. The handle is surmounted by a five prong vajra above a skull and two human heads. They rest above a vase and double vajras and octagonal shaft tapering to a five prong vajra tip. The shaft is encised with circular motif decoration. Iron is notoriously difficult to carve by hand and the heads on this piece are particularly fine.
The form of the Buddhist Khatvanga is derived from the early Indian Shaivite yogins. The khatvanga or trishula is wielded by Shiva and is said to have been used to sever the original head of Ganesha. Within the Hindu tradition, the three points are said to have a number of meanings and significance. They are commonly said to represent the various trinities -- creation, maintenance and destruction, past, present and future, the three Gunas. When looked upon as a weapon of Shiva, the trishula is said to destroy the three worlds.
Padmasambhava, the second Buddha, who is considered the superme subduer of rakshas (demons) is usually portrayed with a khatvanga or trishula. It leans in the crook of his left arm resting against his shoulder and therefore represents the inseparable connection between himself and his enlightened consort, the Dakini Mandarava.
According to the biography of Padmasambhava (attributed to Yeshe Tsogyal), his trident was an important symbol of his realisation, the points standing for victory over the three poisons -- attraction, aversion, confusion/ignorance. In Dza Patrul Rinpoche's instructions for visualizing Guru Rinpoche, the three points represent essence, nature and compassionate energy, but they also stand for his mastery over the three times: past, present, and future.
Age: 20th C
approx 13.25 inches x 2.75 inches
Hand crafted in Nepal