Shakyamuni Buddha returning from Trayatrimsa, the 'Heaven of the Thirty-three.' The supreme gods of the Hindu pantheon, Indra and Brahma, accompany him down the staircase to a certain point but no further. The Buddha continues the descent to earth alone, where he is greeted by a vast crowd who had assembled in anticipation of his return at the ancient village of Sankisa.
SURYA MANDALA Worship of planetary deities was important in Nepali buddhism in the fourteen centuries and appears to have declined thereafter. The central figure in this mandala is the sun god, Surya, who holds two lotuses and rides a chariot pulled by seven horses, accompanied by Four consorts. The eight planetary deities surround the chariot in a circle, again surrounded by a larger circle containing twenty-eight figures- representing the main constellations and astral mansions-around the ecli