Quan Yin and the Dragon Picture

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"Quan Yin and the Dragon"
Copyright, 2012, by Lilipily Spirit & L.O.Hennig

Please respect my right to make a living from my work.
Do not freely share this image.


Thank you to all providers of these elements. I had great pleasure working with them.
It always surprises me how my manipulations turn out - elements sometimes become greatly reduced from their original state as I fuss and fiddle, paint and erase.
I apologise to all providers who think their stock elements are not represented well in the end result.
For me, the end concept is greater than the elements. But I appreciate greatly the provision of these elements, or tools for my creativity.

Dragon Gate = [link]
Yellow daisy grass = [link]
Dragon = [link]
Lotus = [link]
Cosmic Wave = [link]
Goddess clothes = [link]
Other Clothes = Courtesy personal photography by relatives and friends
Vase = [link]
Rainbow = [link]
Avelokiteshvara = [link]
Space background = premade_background__956_by_ashensorrow-d30rzoc.jpg = [link]
= [link]
Waterfall = [link]
= [link]


The models in this poster are my Chinese daughter-in-law and my youngest grandchild.
Some elements in this poster are specifically connected to my grandson's half-Australian heritage - the Southern Cross constellation in the sky, and the stuffed toy kangaroo he

holds in his hands.



The Maternal Goddess, the Protectress of Children, the Observer of All Sounds, Quan Yin is a favorite figure in domestic shrines.

In Sanskrit, her name is Padma-pâni, or "Born of the Lotus." She is the Chinese incarnation of the most prominent of the Bodhisattvas, Avelokiteshvara, the Buddha of Compassion, and is known in China as the goddess of mercy. She was a Buddhist who, through great love and sacrifice during her life, earned the right to enter Nirvana after death. However, while standing before the gates of Paradise, she heard a cry of anguish from the earth, below. Turning back to earth, she renounced her reward of bliss eternal but in its place found immortality in the hearts of the suffering.

In China she has many names and is also known as "great mercy, great pity; salvation from misery, salvation from woe; self-existent; thousand arms and thousand eyes," etc. In addition, she is often referred to as the Goddess of the Southern Sea -- or Indian Archipelago -- and has been compared to the Virgin Mary. She is one of the San Ta Shih, or the

Three Great Beings, renowned for their power over the animal kingdom or the forces of nature. These three Bodhisattvas, or P'u Sa as they are known in China, are namely Manjushri (Skt.) or Wên Shu, Samantabhadra or P'u Hsien, and Avalokitesvara or Kwan Yin (Quan Yin).

Quan Yin is a shortened form of a name that means One Who Sees and Hears the Cry from the Human World. Her Chinese title signifies, "She who always observes or pays attention to sounds," i.e., she who hears prayers. Worshipped especially by women, this goddess comforts the troubled, the sick, the lost, the senile and the unfortunate. Her popularity has grown such through the centuries that she is now also regarded as the protector of seafarers, farmers and travelers. She cares for souls in the underworld, and is invoked during post-burial rituals to free the soul of the deceased from the torments of purgatory.

She is surnamed Sung-Tzu-Niang-Niang, "lady who brings children." She is goddess of fecundity as well as of mercy. She can bring children, protect in sorrow, guide seamen and fishermen (thus we see her "crossing the waves" in many poses), and render harmless the spears of an enemy in battle.

She rules our world and its living Buddha, though she is not incarnate. She is the Lady, who watches over the welfare and happiness of people on earth and teaches them the way toward enlightenment. Kwan Yin has vowed that she will not accept the eternal peace of Nirvana until all human souls have found enlightenment, because she decided that it would be selfish to enjoy peace and knowledge while people still suffer in ignorance. Their misery is her misery. She sheds tears in sorrow for their pain.

In China, all gods and goddesses once had human incarnations. Quan Yin is therefore also known as a Chen Dynasty empress, Shen Wuhua, whose Buddhist nun name was "Guanyin."

The Dragon often seen with Quan Yin is a Water Dragon, representing the turbulent emotions of life. When Quan Yin rides the Dragon, she is riding the emotional storms of worldly life and steering them in better directions for expression. We may not always be able to avoid the tragedies, traumas, and pain of worldly life, but by riding the Dragon like Quan Yin, we can surf their waves.


The Symbols

Avelokiteshvara (carved face in mountain)

The male buddhist counterpart of Quan Yin, this deity is one of the most celebrated. He is the lord endowed with complete illumination, who refrains from entering the blissful state of nirvana to remain here to save the creatures of the Earth. He is the "lord who gazes down (at the world)" and is "he who perceives the world's lamentations." He is devoted to the salvation of others and has profound compassion.

The Lotus Lily

This is a flower which grows in ponds and lakes, with its roots in the mud, and its leaves and flower lifted above the water, so it is considered a symbol of purity and striving to attain liberation from the mundane by opening its heart and mind to the cosmic blessing of the divine 'sun.'

The Willow Branch and Vase

The precious Vase holds the tears that Quan Yin has collected from people of the world, and has transformed into a divine nectar of compassion and wisdom. She uses the willow branches in the vase sprinkle and distribute that nectar of life back into the world, turning Hell into Paradise. Quan Yin is a healer.


A symbol of hope for the future.

Dragon Gate

In Chinese mythology, this Gate is located at the top of a waterfall cascading from a legendary mountain (shown in this poster with the face of Avelokiteshvara carved in it). Many carp swim upstream against the river’s strong current, but few are capable or brave enough for the final leap over the waterfall. If a carp successfully makes the jump, it is transformed into a powerful dragon (the water dragon, now seen in the sky). A Chinese dragon’s large, conspicuous scales indicate its origin from a carp. The Chinese dragon has long been an auspicious symbol of great and benevolent, magical power. The carp jumping through the Dragon’s Gate is an old and enduring Chinese cultural symbol for courage, perseverance, and accomplishment. Historically, the dragon was the exclusive symbol of the emperor of China and the five-character expression, Liyu Tiao Long Men, was originally used as a metaphor for a person’s success in passing very difficult imperial examinations, required for entry into imperial administrative service. More generally, the expression is used to communicate that if a person works hard and diligently, success will one day be achieved.

The Southern Cross

In ancient Hindu astrology, the Southern Cross is referred to as Trishanku, a character in the Hindu Itihasa. Trishanku is commonly referred to through the phrase "Trishanku's heaven." The phrase describes a middleground or a compromise between ones goals or desires and one's current state or possessions. Trishanka was a Hindu king who wanted to enter heaven while still in his body. He asked a guru to work magic to enable that to happen, but the gods prevented his unnatural ascension and made him fall back to Earth. The guru stopped his fall and pleaded with the gods that he had promised Trishanku his physical ascension. A compromise was agreed, and the guru created a second heaven especially for Trishanku, halfway between Heaven and Earth, but the gods had a stipulation, that the king could only live there so long as he was upside down. The Southern Cross is Trishanku in the sky, hanging upside down.

The Australian aboriginals know the Southern Cross as Yaraan-doo - the place of the white gum tree. This is a story about how death came to the world, after the first men and women were created by Baiame, the sky spirit. The new people were told to eat plants to stay alive, but when a long drought reduced the supply, one of the men killed a kangaroo.

The other man, Mirrabooka, refused to eat the meat and wandered off to die. He was found beneath a white gum tree, which was inhabited by a yowie, or spirit of death. The yowie pulled his body into the tree and flew the tree up into the sky - along with the trees other inhabitants, two white cockatoos. The Southern Cross became a reminder that death has come to the world and must now be accepted as part of the cycle of life. Its four fiery eyes are those of the Yowie, and the first man who died, and the pointers are called Mooyi, the white cockatoos. Once in the sky, Mirrabooka was charged by Baiame to watch over all people on Earth.

In Australia, the Southern Cross was incorporated into a flag that represented the rebels in an uprising at the Eureka Stockade in Ballarat, Victoria, in 1854. The rebels died defending the flag but today the design and its basis, the Southern Cross, is seen by Australians as a symbol of freedom and independence, and fighting to the death for what is right.
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