filling a statue?

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filling a statue?

Postby deff » Tue Aug 31, 2010 10:43 pm

I recently purchased a Padmasambhava statue that is unfilled, and after reading about the benefits of filling it would like to. I can't find any information on the correct way to fill it, and I don't know anyone who knows how. Any help is greatly appreciated, thanks :namaste:
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby ronnewmexico » Tue Aug 31, 2010 11:41 pm

I can't say I really know, but my personal experience is lama's or monks do that. Laypeople to my experience may certainly help doing the actual filling, but the final blessing and supervision of the task, is done by a lama.
But maybe laypeople do the whole thing...I just never have seen it done that way.

Just my experience, since there were no replies.
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby Chaz » Wed Sep 01, 2010 12:35 am

deff wrote:I recently purchased a Padmasambhava statue that is unfilled, and after reading about the benefits of filling it would like to. I can't find any information on the correct way to fill it, and I don't know anyone who knows how. Any help is greatly appreciated, thanks :namaste:


While you can always fill it yourself, a Lama is generally the person who should do it for you. It may be that some statues require different rites that others. A Lama would know the correct process and contents.

I don't know of anywhere on the web where precise instructions are given. What you'll find are vague references to Lamas doing this - for such things as statues bound for new centers and so on.

Also, simply because a statue can be filled doesn't mean it has to be. Your practice with the statue will confer blessings all by itself.

If you're intent of having the statue properly blessed, keep looking. One thing you miht do, is if you don't have a Lama nearby, seek out a monastery belonging to your practice lineage and send an inquiry to the abbot. Many monasteries perform various services - practices, etc. - usually for a modest offering and they will most likely have a Lama who can perform the blessing you want.

I sure hope that helps.
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby kirtu » Wed Sep 01, 2010 1:37 am

deff wrote:I recently purchased a Padmasambhava statue that is unfilled, and after reading about the benefits of filling it would like to. I can't find any information on the correct way to fill it, and I don't know anyone who knows how. Any help is greatly appreciated, thanks :namaste:


Any lama .... although they may schedule a time, etc.

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Re: filling a statue?

Postby narraboth » Wed Sep 01, 2010 6:15 pm

according to tibetan tradition, filling is necessary, you shouldn't leave a statue with empty stomach, that is not auspicious.

It's better to be a monk to do it for you. But if you really can't find one, maybe you can choose an auspicious day to do it: in the morning make yourself clean, confess all your wrong doing, do purification practice, and also do the practice you know to purify the fillings.

usually, a big enough size of statue should have a middle wood. I don't know how available it is in western world though. and then you should fill it with mantra paper roll in correct way (no upside-down). If you have, you can put in authentic holy relics or precious dharma pills, etc. Though I have heard that living lamas' hair or clothes is not suitable to be put into statue or stupa.

Finally, you fill the rest space with five metals, five jewels and incense powder. all the stuffs need to be clean and pure, shouldn't have insects etc in it.
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby nirmal » Fri Dec 17, 2010 3:05 pm

Did you fill the Padmasambhava statue yourself or did you get someone to do it for you, Deff? Or is it still unfilled?
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby deff » Fri Dec 17, 2010 10:30 pm

I filled it myself following instructions I found in a statue-filling booklet. I think I did it correctly :thumbsup:
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby Blue Garuda » Fri Dec 17, 2010 11:01 pm

Good to buy a statue from your own school which is already filled.

Good to buy an empty statue and ask your guru how best to fill it or have it filled.

It is quite a complex job but learning how to do it is very rewarding. :)
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby narraboth » Sat Dec 18, 2010 12:14 am

I used to post how to fill in e-sangha but it's gone...

ok, first, depends on how big is your statue. If it's not small (let's say higher than about 12cm?), there should be a 'middle wood.' You can buy it in Tibetan shop, or on ebay?

and then you will need several things:

1. mantra. it has to be printed correctly, one side, and you roll it, put it in up side up (important!). There are several mantras very good for filling, but at least you should have the statue's mantra, in your case padmasambhava, and 'interdependence essence.'

2. blessful things: like real relics, great master's clothes (some people say you shouldn't have a living master's hair or clothes filled), precious and pure source blessed pills (dud tsi), stones from holy places, rices from great temple etc.

3. precious stones or metal and herbs. Can't be poisonus ones.

4. things to fill the rest of space: clean cotton or sandalwood powder. You should fill it until there's no extra space. Your statue shouldn't make sound when you shake it.

1 and 4 are necessary. 2 and 3 depends.
If your statue is small or can't contain middle wood, just fill it.

It's better to have a lama to fill it for you, if not, you can fill by yourself. Just it's not good for someone with stained samaya to fill the statue, so if you want to do it, you should do confession and purification ritual first, and then do it with devotion.

I think it's not bad to do it yourself unless you can really trust the one who fill it for you. I bought a prayer wheel and happily used it, suddenly I felt I really want to open it and check, so I did. Guess what? the mantra in there was up side down! when I turned it, the mantra was not only up side down, but also backward running.
Some manufacturers just either have no moral or way too careless.
I have also heard stories about prayer wheel contain newspaper.
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby nirmal » Sat Dec 18, 2010 3:27 pm

narraboth wrote:I used to post how to fill in e-sangha but it's gone...

ok, first, depends on how big is your statue. If it's not small (let's say higher than about 12cm?), there should be a 'middle wood.' You can buy it in Tibetan shop, or on ebay?

and then you will need several things:

1. mantra. it has to be printed correctly, one side, and you roll it, put it in up side up (important!). There are several mantras very good for filling, but at least you should have the statue's mantra, in your case padmasambhava, and 'interdependence essence.'

2. blessful things: like real relics, great master's clothes (some people say you shouldn't have a living master's hair or clothes filled), precious and pure source blessed pills (dud tsi), stones from holy places, rices from great temple etc.

3. precious stones or metal and herbs. Can't be poisonus ones.

4. things to fill the rest of space: clean cotton or sandalwood powder. You should fill it until there's no extra space. Your statue shouldn't make sound when you shake it.

1 and 4 are necessary. 2 and 3 depends.
If your statue is small or can't contain middle wood, just fill it.

It's better to have a lama to fill it for you, if not, you can fill by yourself. Just it's not good for someone with stained samaya to fill the statue, so if you want to do it, you should do confession and purification ritual first, and then do it with devotion.

I think it's not bad to do it yourself unless you can really trust the one who fill it for you. I bought a prayer wheel and happily used it, suddenly I felt I really want to open it and check, so I did. Guess what? the mantra in there was up side down! when I turned it, the mantra was not only up side down, but also backward running.
Some manufacturers just either have no moral or way too careless.
I have also heard stories about prayer wheel contain newspaper.


Hi Narraboth,
Thanks for the information. My statues are all unfilled.I did see a lama fill a statue for a friend.He was very particular about every little detail.There were a lot of different things that he put inside it.Some were brought along with him from Tibet.He specializes in just filling statues for people.It cost my friend RM500 to fill 1 statue.
He was chanting and filling the statues slowly.It took him about 5 hours(maybe more) to fill one statue.

The statues at our meditation centre are not filled upon the advice of my Vajraguru.All our members have not filled their statues too.I have not asked him why he preferred the statues to be left unfilled but on his next visit, I'll like to see what he has to say.He is a very wise man.I'll share his reasons with you.His next visit would be in about two months time.Basically, I dare not fill the statues by myself for fear of missing a step or two in the process.It is too delicate a process for me to handle.
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby nirmal » Sat Dec 18, 2010 3:55 pm

Yeshe wrote:Good to buy a statue from your own school which is already filled.

Good to buy an empty statue and ask your guru how best to fill it or have it filled.

It is quite a complex job but learning how to do it is very rewarding. :)


Any setbacks,dangers or disadvantages if the statues are not properly filled? Could spirits be attracted to the offerings that we have put into the statues? Thanks Yeshe.
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby tamdrin » Sat Dec 18, 2010 9:36 pm

Yes it seems that bad spirits can enter statues if they are not filled as this happened to me with a Shakyamuni Buddha statue that I had for about ten years only to realize that the spirit was giving me sickness. It even felt like it was attacking me sometimes.. Actually i met a Ngakpa who knew that I had an old statue that was un consecrated hidden in my house. He was the one who advised me to have it filled, that it was the cause of some of my problems. When I got the statue filled the feeling of being "attacked" went away. It was quite strange.. I have never heard of leaving statues unfilled.. or unblessed
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby narraboth » Sun Dec 19, 2010 1:44 am

nirmal wrote:
Hi Narraboth,
Thanks for the information. My statues are all unfilled.I did see a lama fill a statue for a friend.He was very particular about every little detail.There were a lot of different things that he put inside it.Some were brought along with him from Tibet.He specializes in just filling statues for people.It cost my friend RM500 to fill 1 statue.
He was chanting and filling the statues slowly.It took him about 5 hours(maybe more) to fill one statue.

The statues at our meditation centre are not filled upon the advice of my Vajraguru.All our members have not filled their statues too.I have not asked him why he preferred the statues to be left unfilled but on his next visit, I'll like to see what he has to say.He is a very wise man.I'll share his reasons with you.His next visit would be in about two months time.Basically, I dare not fill the statues by myself for fear of missing a step or two in the process.It is too delicate a process for me to handle.


Hi, considering the work that lama did, 500RMB is very reasonable.
Not every lama fill statues that way, and I think it's still OK...
I mean, filling is not the most important thing for a statue. The most important thing is to consecrate it.

A tantra says: you shouldn't make offer to an unconsecrated statue.
It's vajrayana's point of view. (but we should always respect a buddha statue, consecrated or not)
Mahayana or even hinayana also have their consecration ritual, chanting sutra and praise etc.
So the most important thing for you is to find a qualified lama to consecrate it.
But before you can do it, you need to fill it unless there's no space inside.

It would be very nice if you can have your statue filled nicely. There are many details about filling like when a temple wants its expensive statue filled perfectly; but if your statue is a normal one used at home, you don't need to worry about details too much, as long as you don't fill it wrongly. Some details are about perfection, not doing those won't make it wrong.

The more important thing is, you should have a qualified master to consecrate it. I think if you can have a high lama to consecrate your normally filled statue, it would be more blessful than a perfectly filled but not consecrated one.

After consecration, you shouldn't open the statue anymore. You shouldn't even touch the statue with bare hands, not to mention dirty hands.

Anyway, an un-filled and un-consecrated statue surely shouldn't be your object of praying and offering to. You can cover it well and leave it at a clean place, but waiting too long is also not auspicious, unless you are running a statue shop.

About bad spirit, I used to think 'this is buddha's image, even it's empty inside, how come a spirit can live in?' Then one thing change my opinion. My grand father got a serious stroke. My uncle was worried and brought photos of his house to a Daoist guy or something, who has a bit ability. My grand father got a china statue although he's actually not a Buddhist. When the Daoist guy saw the statue in the photo, he immediately said: 'that statue is empty inside, isn't it? there is something in there!'

Maybe spirit is like other beings: insects will still eat your offering, they don't care if it's buddha's or not.

So, depends on what you want from your statue. If you want to have this statue as your very important one, then wait for a lama to do it for you. But you can still do it first, as long as it's not consecrated, you can still re-fill it. If you need to 'use' the statue very soon and it happens that there will be a really great master around, I will suggest you just fill it and bring the statue to the master.

Finally, may I ask what do you mean for statues unfilled in your meditation center? If it's for people to donate and bring home, it's usually not filled, yes. Or you mean the statues you worship to are also empty inside? that would be really unusual. May i ask who's your guru in that case?
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby Heruka » Sun Dec 19, 2010 5:53 am

deff wrote:I recently purchased a Padmasambhava statue that is unfilled, and after reading about the benefits of filling it would like to. I can't find any information on the correct way to fill it, and I don't know anyone who knows how. Any help is greatly appreciated, thanks :namaste:



i have not read the other replies so apologies if this is repeated. i think if your uncertain of what to do, and if you have a lama, sangha near by, please take it to them for blessing and filling. A lama will probably wait until he/she has a few statues to bless and do them all together, so be patient, you may have to wait awhile. or if you feel like your practice carries virtue enough, why not bless it yourself and place mantras and nice things that you like to offer and fill the statue yourself. you can pm me if you like.

all the best.
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby nirmal » Sun Dec 19, 2010 6:29 pm

narraboth wrote:
nirmal wrote:
Hi Narraboth,
Thanks for the information. My statues are all unfilled.I did see a lama fill a statue for a friend.He was very particular about every little detail.There were a lot of different things that he put inside it.Some were brought along with him from Tibet.He specializes in just filling statues for people.It cost my friend RM500 to fill 1 statue.
He was chanting and filling the statues slowly.It took him about 5 hours(maybe more) to fill one statue.

The statues at our meditation centre are not filled upon the advice of my Vajraguru.All our members have not filled their statues too.I have not asked him why he preferred the statues to be left unfilled but on his next visit, I'll like to see what he has to say.He is a very wise man.I'll share his reasons with you.His next visit would be in about two months time.Basically, I dare not fill the statues by myself for fear of missing a step or two in the process.It is too delicate a process for me to handle.


Hi, considering the work that lama did, 500RMB is very reasonable.
Not every lama fill statues that way, and I think it's still OK...
I mean, filling is not the most important thing for a statue. The most important thing is to consecrate it.

A tantra says: you shouldn't make offer to an unconsecrated statue.
It's vajrayana's point of view. (but we should always respect a buddha statue, consecrated or not)
Mahayana or even hinayana also have their consecration ritual, chanting sutra and praise etc.
So the most important thing for you is to find a qualified lama to consecrate it.
But before you can do it, you need to fill it unless there's no space inside.

It would be very nice if you can have your statue filled nicely. There are many details about filling like when a temple wants its expensive statue filled perfectly; but if your statue is a normal one used at home, you don't need to worry about details too much, as long as you don't fill it wrongly. Some details are about perfection, not doing those won't make it wrong.

The more important thing is, you should have a qualified master to consecrate it. I think if you can have a high lama to consecrate your normally filled statue, it would be more blessful than a perfectly filled but not consecrated one.

After consecration, you shouldn't open the statue anymore. You shouldn't even touch the statue with bare hands, not to mention dirty hands.

Anyway, an un-filled and un-consecrated statue surely shouldn't be your object of praying and offering to. You can cover it well and leave it at a clean place, but waiting too long is also not auspicious, unless you are running a statue shop.

About bad spirit, I used to think 'this is buddha's image, even it's empty inside, how come a spirit can live in?' Then one thing change my opinion. My grand father got a serious stroke. My uncle was worried and brought photos of his house to a Daoist guy or something, who has a bit ability. My grand father got a china statue although he's actually not a Buddhist. When the Daoist guy saw the statue in the photo, he immediately said: 'that statue is empty inside, isn't it? there is something in there!'

Maybe spirit is like other beings: insects will still eat your offering, they don't care if it's buddha's or not.

So, depends on what you want from your statue. If you want to have this statue as your very important one, then wait for a lama to do it for you. But you can still do it first, as long as it's not consecrated, you can still re-fill it. If you need to 'use' the statue very soon and it happens that there will be a really great master around, I will suggest you just fill it and bring the statue to the master.

Finally, may I ask what do you mean for statues unfilled in your meditation center? If it's for people to donate and bring home, it's usually not filled, yes. Or you mean the statues you worship to are also empty inside? that would be really unusual. May i ask who's your guru in that case?


My guru is a Chinese. A very high level gifted man.I bow to him like I'm bowing to a Buddha. Rinpoches and Lamas consult him too.He is a relatively quiet and very simple man.He has advised our members not to get their statues filled.It is better to leave them empty as he has the ability to protect the statues that he has consecrated and they will never be occupied by any spirits.A considerable number of his disciples are enlightened.However I am not one of them

Our Meditation Center is a place where we gather to do our meditation.All the statues there are not filled too.They are left empty.We have seven Meditation Centers in East Malaysia.

Yes, I agree that we should respect the Buddha statue.It is also difficult to treat Him as Buddha.We should not think that since we are Buddhists, we can treat Him as a Buddha. We must have some qualities that connect us to Buddhahood, then Buddha will come. We cannot connect with him without great compassion,deep wisdom and deep samadhi no matter how many years we have practiced or how many books we have read.

And yes,spirits can occupy an unfilled statue.They are more attracted to filled statues too.I also agree that the statue should be consecrated.Then again, has the person who consecrated it have enough power or merits to defend it against spirits.Mediums sometimes use spirits to consecrate statues and protect them. Then the trouble starts and one may have to go back to them over and over again to solve their problems which never stop cropping up.We become their bank.

Once a friend dragged me along to see a medium who was a Chinese lady.She went into a trance and in a very sweet voice claimed that she was Kuan Yin.I told her that she was not Kuan Yin.She stared at me with her eyeballs almost falling out and moved very close to me.I was shitting bricks but still insisted that she was not Kuan Yin.She was very angry and started looking horrible and breathing heavily.Being so close to me, her breath was horrible.I asked her if Kuan Yin would ever behave like that.I told her that she was a spirit who wanted to help people but she was not Kuan Yin. Why would Kuan Yin want to occupy your dirty looking body?Then she said that she was good and Kwan Yin was good too and so they were the same.I said no, no way.Finally she admitted that she was just using Kuan Yin's name to do good and help people. I told her to stop doing that as it was wrong.So if we take our statues to people like this, we would be looking for nothing but trouble. That I can assure you.However there are some gifted mediums too, only gifted for a year or two as after that greed steps in and the good spirit leaves making way for the bad and low level spirits to move in.There are many mediums of this nature around.

I did mention that a friend of mine took his statue to a Lama who specializes in filling statues.After that my friend was doing very well for two months and then things went from bad to worse and now he is a bankrupt.I saw the process of filling the statue.It was done in a professional way I should say because I had never witnessed that process before.Okay, let's say that his becoming a bankrupt had nothing to do with his filling of the statue.I went to his house a few days ago. I have very sensitive palms.I put my hand up with my palm facing the statue,and I felt the negative vibrations coming from the statue.So what do you think went wrong?The so called Lama or should I say claimed to be Lama did not have enough merits or power to ensure that the statue would stay protected for a long time.

Filling the statue or leaving it empty should not be our main concern, but getting it consecrated by the right person really matters.But being ordinary people we are still at a setback because most of the time we do not know whom to send our statues to.Thus we have to heavily rely on our Dharma brothers and sisters to point us towards the right person

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Re: filling a statue?

Postby narraboth » Mon Dec 20, 2010 12:23 am

nirmal wrote:My guru is a Chinese. A very high level gifted man.I bow to him like I'm bowing to a Buddha. Rinpoches and Lamas consult him too.He is a relatively quiet and very simple man.He has advised our members not to get their statues filled.It is better to leave them empty as he has the ability to protect the statues that he has consecrated and they will never be occupied by any spirits.A considerable number of his disciples are enlightened.However I am not one of them
...........

I did mention that a friend of mine took his statue to a Lama who specializes in filling statues.After that my friend was doing very well for two months and then things went from bad to worse and now he is a bankrupt.I saw the process of filling the statue.It was done in a professional way I should say because I had never witnessed that process before.Okay, let's say that his becoming a bankrupt had nothing to do with his filling of the statue.I went to his house a few days ago. I have very sensitive palms.I put my hand up with my palm facing the statue,and I felt the negative vibrations coming from the statue.So what do you think went wrong?The so called Lama or should I say claimed to be Lama did not have enough merits or power to ensure that the statue would stay protected for a long time.

......


hi

It's a Tibetan tradition to fill the statue. Since your guru is not a tibetan, probably he has his idea.
Could you please give me a link about your guru? I can read Chinese.

I don't know much about negative vibration, can't comment about that part.
But usually if you ask a tibetan lama to fill a statue, he won't do consecration for you, even he might already finished retreat. Don't think the lama will consecrate it just because you asked him to fill it; for Tibetan monks they are two different things. In general consecrating statues is considered to be rinpoche's busniess, or at least a senior khenpo's job. Even the lama might chant a lot of mantras to 'bless' the stuffs he's filling in, it's still not consecrated; there are special rituals for it.
Last edited by narraboth on Mon Dec 20, 2010 12:40 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby narraboth » Mon Dec 20, 2010 12:39 am

Heruka wrote:
i have not read the other replies so apologies if this is repeated. i think if your uncertain of what to do, and if you have a lama, sangha near by, please take it to them for blessing and filling. A lama will probably wait until he/she has a few statues to bless and do them all together, so be patient, you may have to wait awhile. or if you feel like your practice carries virtue enough, why not bless it yourself and place mantras and nice things that you like to offer and fill the statue yourself. you can pm me if you like.

all the best.


We usually use the word bless but I remember Chidrub Rinpoche says a statue is to be consecrated, which means the wisdom diety is invited to stay in statue; no one can 'bless' the image of Buddha unless himself is a Buddha.

and... to consecrate an image of buddha or diety, you need to finish retreat and get permission form your guru, otherwise it's one of 'thick' downfalls of samaya. So I don't think most of people can do that. But filling a statue is not forbidden for beginners.

What I am saying is base on Tibetan Buddhism's POV, I don't know about other traditions.
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby Heruka » Mon Dec 20, 2010 12:53 am

Heruka wrote: or if you feel like your practice carries virtue enough,
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby narraboth » Mon Dec 20, 2010 12:26 pm

Heruka wrote:
Heruka wrote: or if you feel like your practice carries virtue enough,


There are too many people have very good feeling about their practice. I am sure you know that, too. ;)
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Re: filling a statue?

Postby muni » Mon Dec 20, 2010 12:48 pm

Edited as I don't understand the discussion.
Thank you, your compassion :namaste:
Last edited by muni on Wed Dec 22, 2010 10:24 am, edited 3 times in total.
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