The Mindful Ox … back story:

This Mindful Ox Series of four ink and oil wash drawings are depictions from Indo-Buddhism of the four stages to awakening, wherein the ox is a metaphor, representing the mind.

I was moved to produce this work while attending mindfulness sessions at the Veterans Administration in downtown Los Angeles over the past few years, where I encountered fellow veterans in attendance at the recommendation of their treating physicians and psychologists … veterans suffering from PTSD, drugs, anger management, social anxieties, etc. Most had no idea of mindfulness, meditation or Eastern teachings, and some were at a loss as to why they were present and what was the benefit? 

On more than one occasion I had the opportunity to verbally use the oxen metaphor as an overview to explain the process they were involved in and going through. It was the success I experienced in using the oxen metaphors that led me to do these works in the hope of reaching a broader audience.

And it is in that same spirit I am making them available for purchase here.


The Series is available as a complete set of four or can be purchased as individual pieces. All are museum quality giclee reproductions; titled, hand-signed, and ready for framing. They are produced and distributed from here in California, and come with a dated Certificate of Authenticity, your proof that you have purchased direct reproductions of the originals from me, the artist. The following links provide access to what you need to know to order:

Samsara Hinayana Mahayana Vajrayana The Oxherd Series

For new and old practitioners, an  explanation of the four stages titled Oxen Allegories can be found in the ARTICLES section and with this link:

The Oxen Allegories

Production credits below …



Arqade Gallery; Los Angeles; August 2017
SAND2017 USA (Science And Non-Duality) Conference; San Jose; October 2017
Advertised in the Summer 2018 edition of Buddhadharma


Artist: Michael Earl Anderson
Model: Shoko Watanabe
Studio: Santa Fe Arts Colony, Los Angeles
Show photo: Rachel Krishna Anderson
Production: J6 Creative


The Art of Awakening
Riding the Ox Home
True Perception
The Profound Treasury of the Ocean of Dharma
The Buddha Before Buddhism
A Study of Svatantrika
Shifting Worlds, Changing Minds
An Uncommon Collaboration


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