This sepia depiction of Green Tara was painted by Purna Prasad Hyoju, and shows this beloved Buddhist goddess of mercy and compassion standing amidst the wind. In tribhanga or 'triple-bend posture' Tara stands gracefully upon the seed-head of a windblown open lotus that floats upon the choppy waves of a lake. The lake merges into a hazy background light that forms the shape of Tara's aura within the surrounding clouds, and writhing amidst the clouds above her is a protective jewel-grasping dragon.
Green Tara is graceful, serene, youthful like a sixteen-year-old, and her naked upper body and clinging lower garments reveal her beautiful vivacious form. Her breasts are full with aroused nipples, her waist is narrow, her hips wide, and her flesh is folded into gentle curves on her neck, navel, and under her breasts. She has a sweetly smiling face with two bow-shaped eyes, the urna on her forehead is marked with a pearl, a lotus flower hangs from each of her earlobes, and her long black hair billows freely about her body. A long silk scarf curves around her upper body to fall at her sides, and the free ends of her lower silk garments stream outward on several silver and spirit-like wisps of wind. Tara holds her left hand in front of her heart in the abhaya-mudra of protection, with the base of a lotus-stem curling over her palm. This stem then curves behind her hips and lowered right hand before ascending to her right, where it divides into two leafy stems that bear a large open lotus and a bud. Above the crown of Tara's head is an aura of silver light that radiates from a small image of green Amoghasiddhi Buddha, who is the consort of Green Tara and the 'Lord of the Karma or Action Family' to which Tara belongs. Their natural element is the wind.
© text by Robert Beer