Buddhist Iconography

Topics: Buddhism, Mahayana, Gautama Buddha Pages: 104 (30964 words) Published: February 1, 2013
The Iconography of Nepalese Buddhism
by Min Bahadur Shakya [Text Version]




E-mail: bdea@buddhanet.net Web site: www.buddhanet.net

Buddha Dharma Education Association Inc.


e of

Nepalese Buddhism
 M B S

A  A
Min Bahadur Shakya is a scholar of Newar and Tibetan Buddhism. Among his major publications are  hort istory of uddhism in epal, . ntroduction to uddhist onasteries of athmandu alley, . He was elected Vice President of World Fellowship of Buddhist Youth WFBY for the years –. His major research work on ife and ontribution of epalese rincess hrikuti evi is shortly forthcoming. Mr. Shakya was nominated by Venerable Master Hsing Yun, Fokuang Shan, Taiwan as Research Associate in Fokuang Shan Chinese Buddhist Research Academy for the years –. In , he was granted a SAARC Fellowship (Buddhist Studies) by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, impu, Bhutan. Currently he is working as the Chief Editor of uddhist imalaya, a bi-annual journal dealing with Buddhism in the Himalayan regions. He has also contributed more a dozen research papers in reputed foreign journals. Since , he is teaching in Engineering Institute, Pulchowk Campus, Lalitpur. Presently he is the Director, Nagarjuna Institute of Exact Methods.

Under the definition of andicrafts there are multiple products. Of them the statues of gods and goddesses of Buddhism and Hinduism stand foremost. eir importance is enhanced not only because of the fact that they are hand made but also that they are made by using meticulously time-consuming traditional tech-

niques: Lost Wax Process, Chiselling, antique finishing and so on. It has been long felt by craftsmen, dealers, collectors, and above all art connoisseurs that there was a dearth of books dealing with this subject and they all wished that there should be a book which must be authentic and reliable in subject matter and must have contained historical, cultural and religious meanings and artistic value. e Handicraft Association of Nepal turned out to be an appropriate institution to ponder over this matter and initiated dialogue with ZDH / TA for publication of a book on this subject and partial sponsorship of fund which it accepted. e task of choosing an authentic/professional writer was found to be quite difficult. HAN then chose for this august work Mr. Min Bahadur Shakya who has been engaging himself in the study and research work of Buddhism and Buddhist Iconography for a long time. I am glad and certain that his deep knowledge of iconography of the Buddhist as well as the Hindu pantheon will doubtlessly serve the purpose of the need of all concerned; including even those who do not fall in the above categories, but are simply general readers wishing to earn knowledge on Buddhist as well as Hindu icons. Also for scholars who come to visit this country time and again for their research work on Buddhism of the Greater Vehicle and its iconography this, this illustrious book will be a help. I express my heartfelt thanks to ZDH / TA and its Resident Representative, Mr. Harihar Subedi for their substantial financial support and valuable suggestions, without which the publication could not have materialized. Y R D P H A  N.


A casual visitor will be surprised to see the large number of both peaceful and wrathful looking deities in Kathmandu valley. He will even be doubtful if these are Buddhist at all. Because in eravada Buddhist tradition they are famliar with the image of Shakyamuni Buddha, Dharmacakra symbol, stupa, or some devas connected with Buddha legends. However, this is not the case in Kathmandu valley or in Nepal. e form of Buddhism is Vajrayana which traditional Buddhists believed to have been delivered by Shakyamuni Buddha himself. e Vajrayana form of Buddhism was fully developed in...
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