BIRD OF THE GODS: HOW DID THE PEACOCK GET HER BRIGHT
Originally an Indian goddess Mahāmāyūrī, one of the Pancha Laksha (five guardian goddesses).
Mahamayuri means "great peacock". She is also called Makama Yuri, Peacock Butsumo, or Peacock Queen Bodhisattva. Unusually among Myoo, whose face is characterized by anger, it has a bodhisattva form that expresses mercy. She is often depicted riding a peacock and with one face and four arms. Her four hands each hold a cucumber, auspicious fruit, a lotus flower, and a peacock's tail. Since peacocks eat pests and poisonous snakes such as cobras, KUJAKU MYO-O was believed to have the merit of ‘removing people’s misfortune and suffering’ and became an object of worship. In later years, KUJAKU MYO-O eats poisonous creatures, which is generally interpreted as a Buddha who has the merit of eating the three poisons (greedy, groaning, and foolishness), which are symbols of human worldly desires, and achieving success in Buddhism. There are many sects that recite the mantra of Peacock Myoo to exorcise magic at the time of Ogoma because it eats evil spirits. It is also believed to have the ability to predict rain and was used in prayer for rain.
Esoteric Buddhism spells with KUJAKU MYO-O are called Kujaku Sutra. In Shingon Esoteric Buddhism, prayers through the Peacock Sutra were regarded as the greatest law of protection of the nation.
Peacocks are very symbolic in the Buddhist religion. Because they display their feathers by opening their tails they are associated with openness and purity, and their feathers are even used in Buddhist purification rituals.