This week in Buddhism: Wen Shu Bodhisattva (Manjushri) Birthday

by | May 10, 2024 | Blog

Coming up on 11th May 2024 (4th day of the 4th Lunar Month) is Manjushri Bodhisattva’s Birthday.

Let us use this day, to cultivate a Bodhi mind and connect to Manjushri Bodhisattva’s compassion and wisdom in ourselves.

“Manjushri (Chinese: Wen shu shi li, 文殊師利; Japanese: Monju Bosatsu; Tibet: ‘Jam-dpal, Korean: Moosoo Posal; ) is a Bodhisattva associated with transcendent wisdom (Skt. prajñā) in Mahāyāna Buddhism. The Sanskrit name Mañjuśrī can be translated as ‘Gentle Glory’, ‘Wonderfully Auspicious’, ‘Sweetly Glorious’, ‘The Beautiful, Virtuous Lord’. Mañjuśrī is also known by the fuller Sanskrit name of Mañjuśrīkumārabhūta.

Manjusri means ‘wonderful virtues’, that is he has many unbelievable merits; it also means ‘wonderful first’ as his merits is first amongst all the Bodhisattvas; and it also means ‘wonderful and auspicious’ as his merits are the most auspicious. 

In Esoteric Buddhism he is also taken as a meditational deity.

Scholars have identified Mañjuśrī as the oldest and most significant bodhisattva in Mahāyāna literature. He appears in many sutras and is often regarded as the leader, parent and friend of the Bodhisattvas and spiritual son of the Buddha.”


A mantra commonly associated with Mañjuśrī is the following: “oṃ a ra pa ca na dhīḥ”

This mantra is believed to enhance wisdom and improve one’s skills in debating, memory, writing, and other literary abilities. “Dhīḥ” is the seed syllable of the mantra and is chanted with greater emphasis and also repeated a number of times as a Decrescendo.


Manjusri is well known for his wisdom. He is able to understand thoroughly everything that happens, as well as fond of teaching and leading others. He was the master of seven Buddhas, including Shakyamuni. His knowledge is every wide and without limits, hence he was also called ‘great knowledge’.

He is the chief assistant to Shakyamuni Buddha, and was called Manjusri, Prince of Dharma. In Mahayana Buddhism, Manjusri is not restrained by the traditional ways of Buddhist teachings, but he would use his own ways in Buddhist teachings, whenever possible. He concentrated on the Supreme Truth and he awakens all the sentient beings.”

Featured Image Source: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Text Source: Buddha Tooth Relic Temple, Singapore 

Audio Source: Credit to the respective Artists, mantra of Manjushri (Live) by Heng Chi Kuo


Extra Ordinary human bean, sharing union of Zen (or Chan 禪) timelessness x tech boundlessness. 5 years spiritual sabbatical. Who is Angela? What's her story?

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