Buddha statues in our collection have served as objects of contemplation, meditation
and worship in temples and home shrines over several centuries in many parts of
the world. A great range of imagery proliferated as Buddhism infused the spiritual
consciousness of the East. A Chinese Buddha can express fecundity and earthy humor,
a Thai Buddha is formal and reserved, a Tibetan Buddha may be especially horrific
in depicting wrathful deities. The beauty of these works and their power to aid
mindfulness is in the unique character of each piece, experienced as a personal
connection. It is said that when one feels drawn to a particular statue, one has
found one’s yidam, or personal meditation deity. The Buddha Museum web site consists
of nearly two thousand pages of devotional objects in stone, bronze, wood and
ivory. Though we highly value the beauty and artistry of these works, it is the
teachings from the spiritual traditions that we cherish.
as philosophy becomes a way of life only when it is put into action, the Buddha
essence in a statue arises only when it is contemplated. To meditate upon Buddha's
image is to become aware of our Buddha nature, which is nothing other than the
complete realization of one's own original, immutable self.