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Tibetan Buddhist Lama's Offering Altar B003-03

3 panel cabinet with lotus blossoms two of the front panels are doors seen here opened
front view
two doors over 3 drawers


Two-door, three-drawer storage cabinet. The artist has deviated from the traditional style on the interior kyungbur between the doors and surrounding the drawers; instead of the customary multi-layered zig-zag he has used a single layer broad zig-zag made of lotus petals, which gives it a richer look. The hinges of the doors are wood-pegs in the doors that fit into a hole in the underside of the top & slide into a groove on the base. The doors open by pushing with a single finger on the outside edge of the door.  Lotus designs are on the two front-doors, & the center panel shows the lotus in all three stages: bud, mid-blossom, & full blossom.  These represent the past, present, & future respectively. Please see iconography below for details. The drawers have chrysanthemum blossoms.  This cabinet is painted on the front, with kyungbur (raised gesso) on the front frame at the side & top rails.  The kyungbur on the outside frame is the trademark Wutun zigzag, while the interior frame has a chain of golden lotus petals.   The three bottom-drawers have leather-pulls that come through a metal backing attached to the drawer's front.  The cabinet has been dewaxed & treated with a finishing oil on the inside & the unpainted outside surfaces because the wood was rather dry after being stored for over a century at the monastery.  The flowers are painted on a cloth glued to the doors.   The cabinet is an excellent example of Tibetan cabinetry as is the wonderfully stylized artwork. It was quite an honor to make cabinets for the labrang (Lamas residence), & only the best were asked; this cabinet maker was one of those so honored.  Comes with a Certificate Of Authenticity.

Age: 1840-1860    Material: Predominately Asian Cedar     Dimensions: H=39" W=41" D=17"

If you have questions or would like additional photographs, contact David by emailing david@baronet4tibet.com


B003-03 Price $1960.00 plus shipping & handling West Coast $475, Mtn. States $515, Mid West $545, Atlantic coast $585  Canadian destinations, contact us  for a quote~ this piece ships OTR carrier to your driveway.


The red and 24kt gold zigzag kyungbur adorning the frame is the transition of passion into compassion and the resultant Buddha like purity of actions and thoughts. The 24kt gold continuous 'T'-wave just under the top edge of the of the offering cabinet is also called the thunder wave. This is the thunder of the vajra (diamond scepter, dorje in Tibetan), symbolizing skilful means, compassion, samsara. This compassion is an active quality rather than mere sympathetic feelings not transformed into action. Compassion refers to action that is exactly consonant with whatever is occurring and that is not self-referential.

The doors have wonderful blue and red lotus blossoms on a yellow background. The blue is the destruction of passion or vices and the red is the transmutation of that passion in active compassion. The lotus is an important Buddhist motif. Images of the Buddha and other important persons often are shown seated on a lotus throne. The growth of the lotus, with its roots in mud, growing through water, and emerging as a wonderful plant above the water's surface, is seen as an analogy of the soul's path from the mud of materialism to the purity of enlightenment. The 3 stages of the lotus, bud, utpala (mid-blossom) and the full blossoming throne represent the past present and future respectively.

The drawers have chrysanthemums which symbolizes autumn & the gathering of the harvest. In this case, it is a metaphor for achieving the goal of enlightenment & its accompanying peace. The blue represents compassion. Red background is the transmutation of passion into compassion. The white tips denote purity.

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