Apr 30, 2011

Seven Kannon

Samsara is a cycle of rebirth. A man is born in one of six realms. After death, he is reborn in one of six realms according to the action he conducted during the life time. People living the six realms cannot escape suffering. However, Kannon lives in each realm, and relieves the suffering of people.

Such Kannon is called seven Kannon in Japan. Seven Kannon is as follows.

  1. Nyoirin Kannon
  2. Jyuntei Kannon
  3. Fukuukensaku Kannon
  4. Jyuichimen (Eleven faced) Kannon
  5. Bato (Horse headed) Kannon
  6. Senjyu (One thousand armed) Kannon
  7. Sho Kannon

In spite of six realms, why is seven Kannon? Shingon Buddhism section teaches that Jyuntei Kannon lives in Human world. On the other hand, Tendai Buddhism section teaches that Fukuukensaku Kannon lives in Human world. Thus, the number becomes seven.

The following are pictures of seven Kannon.

Nyoirin Kannon

Jyuntei Kannon

Fukuukensaku Kannon

11-faced Kannon

Horse-headed Kannon

1000-armed Kannon

Sho Kannon

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