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Fudo Myo-o, 12th/14th century
Wood with polychromy and gilt-bronze accessories
41.6 cm (16 3/8 in.)
Sources: Art Institute Chicago / Wiki
The name Fudo Myo-o means “the immovable or unshakable one.” He is one of five myo-o, or lords of light, whose threatening appearance guards the Law of Buddhism. He is equipped to guide the spiritual traveler past temptation on the path to enlightenment. Fudo’s bulging eyes, piercing stare, and protruding fangs express the intensity of his wrath against evil. Seated on a stylized rock formation that symbolizes his steadfastness, he once held his attributes, a rope and sword (these have been removed for conservation), which were used to subdue evil forces and to cut through the ignorance that is the source of suffering. This finely modeled figure reflects the highly detailed, realistic direction taken by Japanese sculptors in the Kamakura period (1185–1333).
In the Shingon tradition of Esoteric Buddhism, the Five Great Wisdom Kings (五大明王; Godai Myo-o, Wǔ Dà Míngwáng), also known as the Five Guardian Kings are a group of Wisdom Kings who represent the luminescent wisdom of the Buddha and protect the Five Wisdom Buddhas.
This sculpture is of Acala (不動明王, Jp: Fudo Myo-o; Ch: Bùdòng Míngwáng) "The Immovable One" - Wrathful manifestation of Buddha Mahavairocana.
Please check out for another of the Five Great Wisdom Kings: