This gallery is being created with the aspiration to showcase art which expresses the Dharma and in this way brings people closer to the truth. 



“Without art there is no imagination. And if there’s no imagination, where’s life? Without art there is real poverty. Without art you are really powerless.”

 — Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

Photo Credit: Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche


The Beauty of the Three Jewels

Triratna Group Exhibition

Artistic interpretation of the Three Jewels by Daleast. The Buddha is at the top, the Dharma is in the middle, symbolised by scriptures, and the Sangha is at the bottom, represented by an assembly of monks.

To celebrate the second anniversary of the Triratna Anusmṛti Sādhanā project we are presenting an online exhibition that highlights the various cultural representations of the triratna symbol and explores contemporary interpretations of The Three Jewels—Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha. This exhibition explores how our own regional and cultural sensibilities can be applied to traditional Buddhist representations.


Triratna Anusmṛti Sādhanā is a simple yet profound practice, composed by Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche.

First introduced at Bodhgaya in 2018 during the joyous Siddhartha Festival it has been regularly practiced online in English, Sanskrit, and Chinese over the past two years.

We are now prepared to begin Triratna practice in Russian, Spanish, and Portuguese. 

“In the Triratna Anusmṛti Sādhanā, when we talk about the recollection of The Noble Three Jewels, fundamentally what’s happening is the awareness of Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha. Actually, it’s really as simple as that … These three are not outside!”

— Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche, Triratna Talk, Feb 2020

Left: Triratna symbol on the stupa gate, Sanchi, Madhya Pradesh, India. Photo by Jamyang Zangpo. Right: The Three Jewels symbol on the roof of the temple Haedong Yonggungsa, Busan, South Korea. Photo by Aomam.
Left: Triratna symbol on the stupa gate, Sanchi, Madhya Pradesh, India. Photo by Jamyang Zangpo. Right: The Three Jewels symbol on the roof of the Haedong Yonggungsa temple, Busan, South Korea. Photo by Aomam.

We find it fascinating that the Triple Gem has been shown in such a variety of ways in different Buddhist cultures. A trident or three wheels frequently represent the triratna (Sanskrit: tri-ratna or ratna-traya) symbol in ancient India. It may be seen on numerous ancient coins and stone sculptures. For example it decorates the gates of the Great Stupa of Sanchi. Buddhist temple roofs in Japan and Korea have three little circles inside a bigger circle painted on them. In Tibetan art the Three Jewels (Tibetan: dkon-mchog gsum) are frequently depicted on thangka paintings towards the bottom, encircled by flames.

Following are comments made by some of the artists regarding their creations:

Rigzin Wangmo:

“Just like a kaleidoscope projects infinite possibilities, this artwork portrays that boundless quality of the three jewels. By training in sacred outlook, we can see the true world as a mandala of the triratna, a vivid illusion rich in colours and potentials. Hope you enjoy the sparkles.”

Rigzin Wangmo’s beautiful art also illustrates the calendar Siddhartha’s Intent and Khyentse Foundation published this month. You can download it here in one of the 29 languages.


Lasha Mutual:

“In this depiction of the Three Jewels, the Buddha, the Dharma and the Sangha are represented by three dharmachakras supported reverently by offering goddesses. The dharma wheels are framed by the arc of a retreat hut, and flowers bloom in the surroundings indicating the flourishing of the Dharma.”


Philippe Inácio-Goetsch:

“This painting was an exploration of the joy and painful limits of playing with symbols. It was also an attempt to use three-fold logic as well as humour to explore the images and essence of Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. When in doubt “Eat the Truth”!




“A single compass-drawn line unfolds nested tripartite figures and reveals a series of powerful interlinked geometric shapes; the triquetra, mandorla, symmetrical lens, Reuleaux Triangle, teardrop, and the crescent-shaped flaying blade of Vajrayogini. The power and mystery of this simple three-part geometry is symbolic of the power and mystery of the three jewels, and also suggestive of the infinite creative potential of emptiness and of the geometrical sub-structures underlying the living world.”

Namo ratna trayāya

“Namo ratna trayāya is a classical Sanskrit formulation meaning, “Homage to the Three Jewels.” It is rendered here in the Horyig (Mongolian) script, invented by the head of the Sakya Lineage Drogön Chögyal Phagpa at the request of Kublai Khan.

“The three square panels, the triangular arrangement, and the triquetra motif all symbolize the Triratna (three jewels). The eight external corners symbolize the eightfold noble path. The twelve triangles symbolize the 12 links of interdependent co-arising, and the black back-ground giving rise through sheer absence to the white foreground figures symbolizes emptiness and its creative power.

“The swastika, contrary to its recent infamy, is a motif symbolizing well-being found in ancient cultures across Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Americas. The earliest attested form is from Ukraine in 10,000BCE.

“For the Buddhists, the swastika is an extremely important symbol, often placed in sculptural form at the Buddha’s heart center. Deriving from Sanskrit su-asti, its literal meaning is ‘all is well’. Here, the interlocking left- and right-oriented swastikas are suggestive of the influence of Bon on the Tibetan Buddhist world, as well as the ‘right-‘ and ‘left-handed paths’ of sutra and tantra.”

Left: “Namo Ratna Trayāya” in Horyig (Mongolian) script. Calligraphy by Chris Sprague. Right: “Triratna” by Chris Sprague. Hand drawn with compass and gold mica pigment on black paper, 12×12.
Left: “Namo Ratna Trayāya” in Horyig (Mongolian) script. Calligraphy by Surdas. Right: “Triratna” by Surdas. Hand drawn with compass and gold mica pigment on black paper, 12×12.
Please feel free to comment and let us know what you think of the exhibition or to contribute your own creative interpretation of the Three Jewels here.


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Mayumi Oda

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Rinpoche's teachings about Art

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