Guan Yin. Goddess of compassion and mercy.
Buddhism is usually regarded as a religion which is led by one master – Buddha. However there are many more ancient legendary masters in this belief system and both male and female characters are honored by Buddhists.
Guan Yin is a bodhisattva - a person who is motivated by supreme compassion and is 'a potential Buddha in training'. She is commonly known as the “Goddess of Mercy” and her main aspect is compassion.
Her teachings legends about her life and her key personality feature still inspire the Buddhist masters and the doctrine.
Guan Yin is usually shown in a white flowing robe - white being the symbol of purity. In one hand is a water jar (as the Sacred Vase the water jar is also one of the Eight Buddhist Symbols of good Fortune) containing pure water the divine nectar of life compassion and wisdom and on the other a willow branch to sprinkle the divine nectar of life upon the devotees as to bless them with physical and spiritual peace. The willow branch is also a symbol of being able to bend (or adapt) but not break. The willow is also used in shamanistic rituals and has had medicinal purposes as well. She is also associated with flowers.
Guan Yin is the Buddhist counterpart to the Virgin Mary and she fulfills a similar role: that of hearing us in our distress meeting us with tenderness and strengthening us to face the tasks of life. The centrality of these maternal figures in both Buddhism and Christianity suggests that mature adult lives share moments of deep self-doubt – and longings to recover some of the security of childhood. We need to be reassured that these wishes are not a sign that we have failed as human beings.
Compassion is one of the things which connects us worldwide – no matter of our nationality skin complexion religion or anything else. Compassion isnt something thats only exlusive to humans we need to remember to show compassion to all life including animals and the nature around us. Thus she is one of the symbols that unites not only Buddhists but everyone who follows a similar mental path.