Reclining Mandalay Alabaster Buddha Sculpture
AGE: 19th Century
CONSTRUCTION: – Alabaster
HEIGHT: – 36cm (highest Part)
DEPTH: – 19cm (Widest Part)
LENGTH: – 84cm
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Reclining Mandalay Alabaster Buddha Sculpture when seen in this position is referred to as the sleeping or resting Buddha or dying Buddha, a representation of the final hours of the Buddha’s life before dying (Parinirvana). In most images of the reclining Buddha sculpture, he is depicted lying on his right side with his right arm supporting his head or his head supported by a pillow.
The Buddha lying in Mahaparinirvana posture refers to the very important event which occurred in the Kushinagar district of the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh when the Buddha passed away, (entered into Nirvana). Today the Mahaparinirvana temple in Kushinagar is a pilgrimage site where Buddhists from all over the world gather.
This depiction of the reclining Buddha is not simply his demise, it is an iconographic reminder meant to show that all beings have the potential to be awakened and free from the cycle of death and rebirth.
The first depiction of the reclining Buddha was first seen in Gandharan art which began between 50BC and 75AD, peaking during the Kushana period from the 1st to the 5th century AD.