The standing Fudo Myō-ō represents the "world of the burning fire," which separates the human world and the Buddhist world, and looks out over the human world. In contrast, the sitting Fudo Myoo represents a steadfast and immovable figure. The angular material combined with the tightly compressed central seat symbolizes the rigidity and immovability of Fudo Myō-ō, and serves as a specific seat for the deity.
The "Mankōhai Kodai-iro Fudo Myoo Zazo" is one of the important Buddhist statues in Japanese Buddhist art, representing the deity Fudo Myoo in the esoteric Buddhist tradition. Fudo Myoo is known for his wrathful appearance, engulfed in flames, and is revered as a protector of believers from evil spirits and obstacles, a destroyer of delusions, and a guide to enlightenment. This seated statue powerfully embodies the attributes of Fudo Myoo and serves as a source of inner peace and spiritual growth for practitioners and devotees of esoteric Buddhism.
The name "Mankōhai Kodai-iro" holds several meanings. Firstly, "Mankōhai" refers to the circular halo (Hyakka) that encircles the back of the statue, emphasizing the divine nature and majesty of the deity while highlighting Fudo Myoo's strength. On the other hand, "Kodai-iro" signifies the ancient roots of this Buddhist image in the traditions and beliefs of ancient Japan. In ancient Japan, esoteric Buddhism, including the worship of Fudo Myoo, was prevalent, and this heritage is reflected in the name of this statue.
This statue showcases exceptional craftsmanship and intricate decorations. Details such as the posture, facial expression, and the figure holding a sword reflect the skill of ancient artisans. Moreover, vibrant colors have been applied to enhance the statue's beauty further.
The Mankōhai Kodai-iro Fudo Myoo Zazo holds significance not only in religious terms but also in the realms of Japanese art history and culture. Its powerful stance and beauty have left a profound impression on many, serving as a medium to convey Buddhist teachings and beliefs. Additionally, this Buddhist image is displayed in Japanese temples and museums, providing opportunities for the general public to appreciate its splendor. Therefore, the Mankōhai Kodai-iro Fudo Myoo Zazo is cherished as a part of Japan's cultural heritage.