Big Tangka of Palden Lhamo
Palden Lhamo is a Dharmapala, meaning "Protector of the Dharma" in Sanskrit, as well as the only female. According to the cult, it took on the task of protecting not only Buddhism, but Tibet itself, its government and the reincarnation lineage of the Dalai Lamas and Panchen Lamas before the first Dalai Lamas. Moreover, he promised that whenever there was a need for a divine response, the waters of Lake Lhamo Latso, near Lhasa, would provide anyone who asked them with clear images and visions.
Currently, Palden Lhamo is the only female protector of the Tibet Dharma common to all of her schools, namely Gelug, Nyingmapa, Kagyu and Sakya, each of which performs specific divination rituals, one in particular conducted with dice. It is considered akin to Sarasvati or Tārā.
Palden Lhamo, present in countless statues and thangkes, is depicted in an angry attitude while crossing a river of blood, seated on a mule with a saddle in human leather, surrounded by the flames of wisdom caught in the act of drinking blood from a skull. His figure is dark blue, has a face with three eyes, a sun on his navel and the moon on the crown of his head, and above essavi is a peacock-umbrella, a traditional symbol of protection.