Kuan Yin - History & Purpose: ----------------------- Back to Home PageKuan Yin Gardens of Compassion - Simply a place to be to contemplate compassion and kindness.
Legend has it that Kuan Yin, a mythological figure, evolved from male form, know as Avalokitesvara (ava-low-key-tesh-va-ra), The Bodhisattva of Compassion, in the period before the Buddha, 5th century BC. The birth and introduction of her form is simply a symbol of deep compassion, and is not a religious symbol. In time this compassionate one took female form and was embraced by Taoists. In 600-900 AD Christians came to China, with statues of Mary in tow. The physical similarity and message for many was striking. Soon statues of Kuan Yin included symbolism presented in statues of Mary, such as the rosary, vase and welcoming hand gestures. Sisters in spirit, as both are moving reminders of compassion. Her popularity waxed and waned as society moved from more gentle and caring times to strict and controlling times of Confucius and the so called Cultural Revolution.
A bodhisattva is a person who is able to reach nirvana but delays doing so out of compassion in order to save suffering beings. Many take their vows to live a life with this path as their foundation. Kuan Yin’s form and mythology is a path for many to embrace deep compassion. Especially in times of crisis, her essence held in our heart, can transform ourselves and others.
Again Kuan Yin’s popularity is increasing. It is obvious to many that a lack of compassion has created deep schisms in society. Maybe a neutral place to be and contemplate compassion can be a stepping stone to greater union and a birth place for creative social evolution.
Kuan Yin Gardens of Compassion are designed to be contemplative, relaxing and sacred places for all, as compassion is at the heart of all spiritual paths. There is no right or wrong interpretation of Kuan Yin, as everyone’s experience of compassion is individual, different, valid and deserving of our respect.
-Mary & Kuan Yin
Sang, the Vietnamese sculpture artist
History Book: The Kuan Yin Chronicles: The Myths and Prophecies of the Chinese Goddess of Compassion