Setsuka's CE

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WuHT

Premium Moderator
Hey anyone know what type of deities are in the background ? Are they custom shinto deities or something else ?
Setsuka.CE..jpg


The one in the center had 6 arms (4 holding weapons)
• The hand in the 9 o clock position is holding a bastard sword ? the handle looks barely large enough to accommodate 2 hands due to the massive pommel.
• The hand at the 11 o clock position is holding a cool pick-spear (like a Bec de Corbin but with another small pick instead of a hammer head.
• The 1 o clock position has a short one-handed sword, but maybe its the same as t he 9 o clock one but just farther away.•
• The 3 o clock hand has a pole arm battle axe with an intricate feather design on the opposite end of the blade.

The 6 characters on the side are not mirror images and one of them is even playing her sword like a flute!
 

weshookhands

[11] Champion
I haven't found anything substantial yet. What I can say though is that the overall symbolism definitely points to buddhist rather than shinto traditions.

EDIT: I suppose the center deity is some version of Benzaiten. Haven't identified the surrounding deities (?).
 
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Fatal_Exodus

[14] Master
My immediate guess would be Bishamonten/Vaisravana, aka a Japanese war deity (since the woman is holding a bunch of weapons). They’re also one of the Seven Lucky Gods, of which there are seven pictured in her CE, but I dunno for sure.
 

Rusted Blade

[13] Hero
Hey anyone know what type of deities are in the background ? Are they custom shinto deities or something else ?
View attachment 77426

The one in the center had 6 arms (4 holding weapons)
• The hand in the 9 o clock position is holding a bastard sword ? the handle looks barely large enough to accommodate 2 hands due to the massive pommel.
• The hand at the 11 o clock position is holding a cool pick-spear (like a Bec de Corbin but with another small pick instead of a hammer head.
• The 1 o clock position has a short one-handed sword, but maybe its the same as t he 9 o clock one but just farther away.•
• The 3 o clock hand has a pole arm battle axe with an intricate feather design on the opposite end of the blade.

The 6 characters on the side are not mirror images and one of them is even playing her sword like a flute!
This is a somewhat fictionalized version of a Buddhist mandala, and the figures in the background are bodhisattvas (or bosatsu, to use the Japanese variation as I suppose we should in this instance) who have become buddhas (not to be confused with the Buddha, but these are enlightened individuals who reached a place in the karmic path where they are accorded the name as a title) who have reached Nirvana and become Awakened. They feature prominently in most schools of Buddhism, including those which took root in Japan. However, there's a bit more aggro going on here than you will typically see in a mandala: it's not unheard of for weapons to appear symbolically in this kind of representation (and there are some Japanese traditions that fused Buddhism with martial culture, and syncretically with older deities), but not quite in the fashion we see here. The design is also atypical in two other respects: the three flanking buddhas are each repeated twice, and (apparently to share thematic overlap with Setsuka) they have feminine traits, while most buddhas would normally be presented as men--or at least it would be very rare to find a mandala representing all female bodhisattvas, particularly ones bearing weapons.

Because of the atypical features, it is difficult to say for sure which buddhas they are meant to represent (if indeed they are meant to be one-to-one analogs for actual buddhas rather than just rough variations on the typical theme, in the usual Soulcalibur mode. But if I had to guess, I would say the one kneeling and bearing the sword upright is meant to be Acala, since this is very reminiscent of his iconography. But he is hold a ryui (ceremonial scepter) on the right, so he could also easily be Manjushri. A lute is common to many bodhisattvas, so it is not surprising to see two of them playing one here. The central figure is very likely Avalokitesevara, a major bodhisattvas who is very commonly depicted with many arms and who does sometimes appear as female--though i've never known him/her to appear quite so armed to the teeth. But it's not like weapons never appear in mandalas and, again, it's Soulcalibur and it's a Japanese Buddha appearing in a martial context, so they probably just took some liberties.
 
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