This rare thanka depicting the Tibetan Buddhist Cosmos is painted in the eastern Tibetan manner with reference to Chinese traditions, as in the blue and green rockwork of Mount Meru, and in the Chinese hardwood furniture design of the dais on which the monks debate below.
A similar scene is portrayed in a circa 18th century thanka in The Avery Brundage Collection at the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, with Vairochana teaching in the Akanishta Paradise, where Buddha and Vairochana are said to be ultimately identical; for a full discussion of the Vairochana painting and the cosmology of Mount Meru; see Huntington and Bangdel, 2003, pp. 82-3, no. 8. For further discussion and illustrations of forms of Mount Meru according to the Abhidharmakosha and Kalachakra systems, and interpretation of Tibetan Cosmology; see Beer, 1999, pp. 102-15.
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