DorjeShugden.com is proud to announce that our first mural has been completed in New York!
As the artist was about to begin his work however, the weather turned against us and New York was hit with several severe winter storms that lasted for a month. As a result, after the artist whitewashed the wall to prepare it for the mural, the wall froze over. He was unable to continue until recently when we were updated with the finished work! The work is magnificent!
This mural was conceptualized to reach a younger generation who would see it as a photo opportunity and spread it around on social media, and therefore multiply the number of people blessed by Dorje Shugden just by looking at him. It was also our intention that the mural would generate intrigue for passersby, and interest them in exploring the background and practice of Dorje Shugden.
We describe here the process of creating this mural, and the benefits of making Dorje Shugden’s image available to all, so that our readers and Dorje Shugden practitioners everywhere can rejoice in the planting of Dharma seeds in countless beings’ mindstreams. May this create the cause for many more and much larger Dorje Shugden murals to spring up around the world, so that people everywhere can be blessed by this sacred image of our Protector.
Check out our other murals:
The mural is located between White Street and Bogart Street, which is close to a busy train station (the ‘L’ train stop on Morgan Avenue) and a popular restaurant Roberta’s where Bill and Hillary Clinton dined in 2012. The street is also an active one, across from a large apartment building, and the wall is one of Brooklyn’s most popular. Graffiti artists from around the world come to paint here when they visit New York, so it attracts a great deal of photographers and people looking to see what is new so they can take photos and upload it to social media…great exposure to blessings!
- Negotiations are initiated with the building owner to rent the wall for the mural, and written permission is received
- Meanwhile, an initial sketch is designed on the computer. It is sent to DorjeShugden.com for further amendments and later, approval
- Measurements are taken for the size of the Dorje Shugden image on the wall
- The wall is whitewashed as an undercoat
- The Dorje Shugden image designed earlier is sketched on the wall, and sent to DorjeShugden.com for approval
- Colour is added to the Dorje Shugden image
- Details are finalized with the artist and corrections, if any, are made
Unlike regular paint work or decoration, murals can give artists a better opportunity to express their creative and artistic interpretations of an image. Some of the benefits of a nicely-done mural include:
- Brightening the local environment. Murals are often colourful and make use of dead space that is otherwise plain and underutilised
- Education and a provider of inspiration. Murals can be used to promote positive messages or, in our case, positive images
- Promoting creativity. Murals can help to generate further exciting artistic expressions of a person’s thoughts, beliefs and opinions
- Create lasting impressions on visitors. Because of their size and contemporary style, a mural with a catchy message can be effective advertising that sticks with the viewer
- Effective message boards. Murals can be painted with text large enough for people to read from a distance. Their size captures your attention, whether or not you are interested in the subject
- Murals like ours with a large Buddha image on the ground level can attract and bless people when they walk by. Due to their size, passersby cannot help but look at murals and when it is an image of the Buddha, it plants seeds of enlightenment in their minds
WHY A DORJE SHUGDEN MURAL?
Buddhists do not worship statues and religious artefacts. In the Buddhist tradition, a sacred image of the Buddha is used as an inspiration for creating and spreading positive human qualities, for example compassion and peace.
Dorje Shugden is an emanation of the Wisdom Buddha Manjushri so for those who recognise his form, our mural is a visual aid that helps them to recall the great qualities of the enlightened mind, so that we might emulate them ourselves.
For those who do not know who Dorje Shugden is, it creates imprints in their minds to receive the wisdom of Dharma and the Lam rim in the future, since most people find images easier to remember as compared to text. The addition of the website URL also provides interested individuals with a way of finding more information.
In creating as much images of our Protector as possible, we also bring the benefits of Dorje Shugden to many. Who knows, perhaps someone who is in need of spiritual guidance one day happens to walk by our mural and sees the words “For divine help…” and begins the Protector practice from there.
Our mural is located in an area that is very popular for graffiti artists to exhibit their work and creative talents. Because of this, many companies run tours specialising in street photography and they bring thousands of people to our wall to take photographs of the graffiti. Thus our mural being in this area means thousands of people will see it.
Our ultimate motivation is that Dorje Shugden’s practice reaches all sentient beings, to give them the clarity of mind and ability to discern the wisdom which will help them to alleviate their own suffering. This is because Dorje Shugden is an emanation of Manjushri, and any practice of Manjushri is very effective for helping us to clear our delusions and ignorance, and to develop penetrative insight and wisdom. Buddha images such as Dorje Shugden ultimately implants the seeds of Buddha awakening within the perceiver. Even if a person sees a Buddha image in anger without faith, by the power of the enlightened qualities of a Buddha, imprints are planted karmically that they will see a Buddha or meet the teachings in the future.
We plan on more murals throughout large cities. Anyone interested in this project in their cities, do let us know. We are looking for more artists! Or you can do the same in your communities. Arrange a Dorje Shugden painted so all may be blessed. A blessing can go a long way!