Shakyamuni Buddha Calling the Earth to Witness His Enlightenment
Dimensions : 13 1/2 x 10 7/8 x 7 3/4 in. (34.29 x 27.62 x 19.68 cm)
Credit LineGift of David Kamansky and Gerald Wheaton
LabelBuddhist sculptures from across Asia often share common physical features that are derived from holy texts and folkloric traditions. This Burmese sculpture depicts the Buddha seated in a cross-legged position with his right hand touching the ground to signify his enlightenment. He wears a simple robe to signify his status as a monk. The bump on the top of his head originally signified a princely top-knot, but was later interpreted as a sign of his great wisdom. Likewise his elongated ears were originally a reminder of the heavy jewelry he wore as a wealthy young man, but later became symbols of his attentiveness to the prayers of those in distress.