Antique 1800's to early 1900's bronze Yab-Yum sculpture with deep mystic symbolism. Yab Yum generally means duality and polarity of energy - male and female energy coming together to create one whole. Bringing their different energies to create wisdom and compassion, tantric sexual practices which join together this energy and the divine strength of creation. This is not a mass produced piece and shows signs of having been lovingly made by hand perhaps for a local temple. The male (father), represents compassion for all beings, which is the natural expression of such wisdom. Their union is ultimately undertaken out of compassion for the world.
CONDITION: Excellent antique condition with normal signs of use appropriate for age
SIZE: 12 inches high x 8 inches wide x 7 1/2 deep
Yab-yum is generally understood to represent the primordial (or mystical) union of wisdom and compassion. In Buddhism the masculine form is active, representing the compassion and skillful means (upaya ) that have to be developed in order to reach enlightenment. The feminine form is passive and represents wisdom (prajna), which is also necessary to enlightenment. United, the figures symbolize the union necessary to overcome the veils of Maya, the false duality of object and subject.
In Tibetan Buddhism, the same ideas are to be found concerning the bell and the dorje, which, like the yab-yum, symbolize the dualism that must be exceeded. The sacred Tantric practice leads to rapid development of mind by using the experience of bliss, non-duality, and ecstasy while in-communion with one's consort.
In Hinduism the yab-yum has a slightly different meaning. There, the embraced posture represents the divine strength of creation. The Hindu concept is the one of a passive masculine deity embracing his spouse called shakti, which represents his activity or power.
The symbolism of union and sexual polarity is a central teaching in Tantric Buddhism, especially in Tibet. The union is realised by the practitioner as a mystical experience within one's own body.
As a tantric practice, Yab-yum is akin to the Karmamudrā or "actionseal". This is the tantric yoga involving a physical partner. However, the aim of the practice is to control one's winds. This sadhana is part of the completion stage.
Andrea, your store is a wonderful treasure trove and your knowledge and class are of a scholarly collector.
I am a university research professor with an eye for detail. I have never seen any vendor with your level of exquisite scholarship. Just like your fine objets d'art, your descriptions are crafted with masterful finesse; it is such a pleasure reading them and it is also a great learning experience. Thanks again! Patrick
From the first time I watched Astaire and Rogers float across a dance floor as a young girl, I have loved art deco design, art, fashion and jewelry. So bold and beautiful, and so different from anything that came before it. Art deco changed social and design sensibilities forever. A lifetime collector of high quality antiques and vintage, I started by making contacts, researching and learning. Picking the best of the best, I live with art deco and vintage decor and used to wear the fashions of the day. To say that I feel in love is an understatement. I reveled in the fact that I was able to reflect my unique style and sensibilities with a marriage of old and new. What you see in my shop is my personal collection. Since I was in my teens I have bought what pleases me, what I find beautiful and unique, and the things that speak to me on a creative level. I hope that you can see and feel the passion and love that I feel for antiques and vintage pieces and share with you. You will find art deco, collectible and vintage fine art paintings, original illustrations and magazine covers, home decor, marble, alabaster and metal lamps, nude flapper table lamps, sterling silver decorative accents and tableware for the home and entertaining, designer and estate jewelry and fine vintage watches in my shop.