The Second Buddha: Master of Time

The Second Buddha: Master of Time presents the story of the legendary Indian Buddhist master Padmasambhava. Also known as “The Lotus-born,” “Precious Guru” (Guru Rinpoche), or “The Second Buddha,” Padmasambhava is widely credited with bringing Buddhism to the Tibetan lands. The ancient legends of Padmasambhava have transcended vastly different periods and cultures, carrying as they do universal messages about the power of human emotions, human achievement and triumph over adversity, self-transformation, impermanence, and the nonlinear nature of time. Legend holds that Padmasambhava was an enlightened being, capable of seeing through time to predict troubled times in the future. In order to aid future generations, he hid his teachings, known as hidden treasure teachings (terma), throughout the Tibetan lands for his disciples to discover.

The Second Buddha explores the visual and material world centered on Padmasambhava through sculpture, Tibetan scroll paintings (thangkas), textiles, and manuscripts from the 13th through 19th centuries. The exhibition will also include interactive tablets with augmented reality technology that visitors can use to further explore the artworks and discover the past, present and projected teachings of Padmasambava.

The exhibition is accompanied by a richly-illustrated publication co-produced with the Rubin Museum, featuring essays by Benjamin Bogin, Associate Professor of Asian Studies at Skidmore College; Lewis Doney, Research Associate at the Centre of Buddhist Studies at the SOAS University of London; Daniel A. Hirshberg, Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Mary Washington; and Elena Pakhoutova, Rubin Museum Curator of Himalayan Art.

Exhibition Name
The Second Buddha: Master of Time
Exhibition Type
Group Exhibitions
Wachenheim Gallery
Feb 09, - May 19,
The Second Buddha: Master of Time is curated by Rubin Museum Curator of Himalayan Art Elena Pakhoutova and is organized for the Tang Museum by Assistant Director for Curatorial Affairs and Malloy Curator Rachel Seligman.
Student Staff
Qilin Zhao
Education Assistant K-12, Exhibitions Intern, Education Intern K-12, Tang Guide, Student Advisory Council
Dayna Joseph
Exhibitions Assistant, Student Advisory Council, 2017-18 Carole Marchand Endowed Intern, Exhibitions Intern
Past related events
Pattern by Nathan Bloom ’21
Inspired by the performance Honey Baby in the exhibition Janine Antoni & Stephen Petronio: Entangle
The Tang Pattern Project celebrates the Museum’s 20th anniversary. Organized by Head of Design Jean Tschanz-Egger, past and current Tang Design Interns created patterns inspired by the Museum’s exhibition and event history.