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Avalokitesvara (Sanskrit, "Lord who looks down", , THL: Chenrézik) is a bodhisattva who embodies the compassion of all Buddhas. This bodhisattva is variably depicted and described and is portrayed in different cultures as either female or male. In Chinese Buddhism, Avalokitesvara has become the somewhat different female figure Guanyin. In Cambodia, he appears as Lokesvara.

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WordNet 2.0 Dictionary

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1. a male Bodhisattva; widely associated with various gods and people
(synonym) Avalokitesvara
(hypernym) Bodhisattva, Boddhisatva

Buddhism Glossary

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Popularly known as the Bodhisattva of Compassion. He has reincarnated in this world numerous times (in both male and female forms) and therefore plays many roles depending on which strand of Buddhism one follows. First, in Mahayana Buddhism, he is considered to be the manifestation of Amitabha Buddha, the founder of the Pure Land school of Buddhism, and is often represented at Amitabha's right hand. As such he is available to help all in dire need. Second, in China, she appears as Kuan Yin, the Goddess of Compassion. In folk belief, she keeps people safe from natural catastrophe. Third, in Tibet, he appears in several forms. The most important of these are as Chenrezig (the male partner of the couple who gave birth to the Tibetan people), Tara, and as the Dalai Lama.

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