Positions and postures of the Buddha: Meaning
Positions and posture of the Buddha: Introduction
If you know where and what to look for, conveying the meaning of a Buddha position or posture becomes a snap. Each traditional pose has a meaning related to an important event in the life - or past lives - of the historical Buddha.
Also called Asana or attitude , there are over 100 poses illustrating the life of the Buddha. Each posture has a specific hand gesture, called Mudra.
The statues on sale are generally the most popular and revered representations in major temples around the world.
The Protection Buddha - Overcoming Fear
This representation of the Buddha seated with the right hand raised and turned outward has two common meanings.
- The first is that of the protective Buddha, the right hand raised symbolically represents a shield.
- The second meaning is "Overcome fear" . Closely linked to the first because the one who receives protection is in fact less fearful.
The main features of this posture of the Buddha, apart from the raised right hand, is that the Buddha can be depicted seated or standing and the left hand can be extended outward or the palm up on the knees .
This statue symbolizes courage and offers protection against fear, delusion and anger.
The Buddha of Meditation - of Serenity - Calming
Another of the most common Rupas is that of the Buddha in meditation. This statue is intended for those seeking peace of mind and life , or those who wish to improve their own meditation skills. Most people buy a meditation Buddha to set up a "relaxation room" or just a corner of their house where they can sit quietly for a while to relax.
In this position, the Buddha is depicted with both hands on the knees , face up and the legs are crossed - either pose double Lotus (with the ankles of each leg folded one behind the other.).
As this posture usually represents advanced concentration, the Buddha's eyes are either half closed or almost fully closed. The silhouette of the statue has more or less the shape of a triangle, which represents its stability .
Many of the largest Buddha statues in Japan, such as the large statue of Buddha Kamakura at Kotokuin temple , and large statues in Korea are in the meditation posture, this position is also known as Buddha Amithabha , which means " Limitless Light ".
The Buddha Touching the Earth
This is the most common Buddha pose that you will find in Thai temples . He is depicted with legs crossed , the left hand on the thighs and the right hand pointing towards the ground with the palm facing inwards, facing the Buddha. This posture is known as the Call of the Earth to Witness and is the definition of the moment of enlightenment for the Buddha.
This story goes that after six years the Buddha was finally on the verge of enlightenment.Unfortunately, Mara, the Demon of illusion tried to dissuade the Buddha from the later stages The Buddha meditated all night long to overcome the fears and temptations sent by Mara, then called on the Earth goddess to testify that he had achieved enlightenment in order to share with the rest of the world . Witnessing this, the Earth Goddess twists her hair and releases a torrent of water that sweeps away the Demon Mara and all the temptations he had released.
The Nirvana Buddha - Reclining Buddha
This statue represents the historical Buddha in his last moments of life on earth, before he died one last time to enter Nirvana.
It is said that a alms giver accidentally offered spoiled pork which led to the death of the Buddha.
Because he had obtained enlightenment during his lifetime, the Buddha was able to escape the endless cycle of birth - death - rebirth (known as Samsara) and was able to enter Nirvana.
In this pose, the Buddha is still depicted lying on his right side on a resting table. One of the best-known examples of this statue is kept at Wat Pho in Bangkok, Thailand.
The Medicine Buddha
The Medicine Buddha is depicted in blue-skinned paintings , but whether in the form of a statue or a painting, the right hand is held down with the fingers pointing upwards. ground. The palm facing out and a bowl of grass rests in the left hand on his knee.
Tibetans believe that the Buddha was responsible for imparting knowledge of medicine to the peoples of the world. In fact, the right hand turned outwards means " to grant a blessing " (to give a blessing) to men. It is a hand gesture common among Buddhist and Hindu statues.
The Medicine Buddha is worshiped by those seeking health, and is more commonly found in Buddhist temples and communities in Nepal or Tibet.
The Teaching Buddha - DharmaChakra Buddha
This statue stands for wisdom , understanding and fulfillment of destiny .
Both hands are held at the level of the chest, thumb and forefinger forming a circle. The right hand is turned, the palm facing the inside, while the left hand has the palm facing the outside .
Like most images of the Buddha, the Teaching Buddha describes a particular moment in the life of the Buddha, namely, the first sermon that the Buddha gave after attaining enlightenment. This sermon was addressed to a small group of disciples who had previously despised the Buddha. This is a particularly suitable statue for those who are studying or are interested in learning more about spirituality.
The sentence DharmaChakra is difficult to translate. The word Dharma means " the way of righteousness ", while the word Chakra is generally translated as "the Universe" or "the Cosmos". Taken together, this phrase is generally interpreted as "putting in order the cosmic law of justice", or "turning the wheel of cosmic justice".
The Walking Buddha - Sukhotai Buddha
The walking Buddha has for meaning the grace and the inner beauty .Right hand raised, facing outward, left hand hanging down along the left side of the Standing Buddha's body, right foot behind, right foot back, starting to rise from the ground.
This statue is peculiar to the Sukhotai period in Thailand . It represents a time when the Buddha returned to earth after delivering a sermon on Dharma in Nirvana .
The Laughing Buddha - Prosperity Buddha
The Laughing Buddha is often confused with the historical Buddha but in reality it is Ho Tai , a revered Chinese monk . He is akin to Santa Claus of the West since the laughing Buddha was famous for his Buddhist sermons and his bag full of gifts that he brought to children to reward them for coming to learn about Dharma .
If Ho Tai is confused with the Buddha, it is partly because they both wear robes, and that in some languages (Thai, for example) the vernacular word for Buddha and for monks is the same, namely " Phra ".
The laughing Buddha is often depicted in various forms , either with his arms above his head, reaching for the sky, or sometimes holding a bag or a bundle over his shoulder. No matter the performance, he always has a smiling face.
More than 100 postures and positions of the Buddha!
There are over 100 different postures and positions representing the Buddha , describing them one by one here is like writing a book but the most popular are listed in this article.
Now that you know the meaning of the different Buddha statues, you can make your choice to add the Buddha you need to your interior.