By Steven Heine, Charles S. Prebish
The historical past of Buddhism has been characterised through an ongoing rigidity among makes an attempt to maintain conventional beliefs and modes of perform and the necessity to adapt to altering cultural stipulations. Many advancements in Buddhist heritage, corresponding to the infusion of esoteric rituals, the increase of devotionalism and lay pursuits, and the assimilation of warrior practices, mirror the impression of frequent social adjustments on conventional spiritual constructions. even as, Buddhism has been capable of hold its doctrinal purity to a outstanding measure. This quantity explores how conventional Buddhist groups have replied to the demanding situations of modernity, akin to technology and know-how, colonialism, and globalization. Editors Steven Heine and Charles S. Prebish have commissioned ten essays via prime students, each one studying a specific conventional Buddhist tuition in its cultural context. The essays examine how the stumble upon with modernity has impacted the disciplinary, textual, ritual, devotional, functional, and socio-political traditions of Buddhist suggestion all through Asia. Taken jointly, those essays demonstrate the variety and energy of latest Buddhism and provide a wide-ranging examine the best way Buddhism interacts with the fashionable international.
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Additional info for Buddhism in the Modern World: Adaptations of an Ancient Tradition
8). It bears a striking resemblance to stone and bronze Buddha figures from the second and third centuries, respectively, now found in the Anuradhapura Museum. However, attempts to accurately date many of these images are frustrated by the subsequent repainting and plastering of them over centuries. During the eighteenth century, in particular, the caves underwent massive renovation as part of Kirti Sri’s revitalization of Sinhalese Buddhism. Although well intended, the result has been a distortion of the original forms.
The Culavamsa says that the monarch “made himself one with the religion and the people,”9 the highest praise possible from the viewpoint of Sri Lanka’s chronicles. The vast work undertaken at Dambulla is just one example of the religious and artistic renaissance generated by the Kandyan ruler. 10 Holt’s study focuses on the Kandyan temple wall paintings refurbished by Kirti Sri, of which the Dambulla cave temples are the finest example, “to understand that they are, on the whole, a revitalized form of a classical style appropriated to express paradigmatic themes of religious meaning deemed significant or wholly relevant for their contemporary milieu.
Photo by Ellen S. Goldberg. Despite their origin, religious statues of this region are believed to adhere to the artistic canons of proportion found in the Sariputra, a north Indian Sanskrit text. The bulk of the Sariputra is devoted to the creation of Buddha figures in every imaginable pose, and provides the artist with meticulous dimensions and stylistic instructions. The translated text is on permanent display in the Colombo Museum in the nation’s capital. It makes fascinating reading and sheds valuable insight as to how Buddhist images were created.
Buddhism in the Modern World: Adaptations of an Ancient Tradition by Steven Heine, Charles S. Prebish