Bronze figure Buddha "Shakyamuni"


Shan State, Myanmar (Burma), mid. 20th century or earlier, private collection from Finland.

Beautifully patinated bronze alloy Shakyamuni Buddha are from Shan, Burma. The Sukhothai style Buddha is seated in vajrasana, with his right hand gesturing to the earth in the bhumisparsa mudra position. The posture, known as ”calling the earth to witness”, symbolizes the Buddha's enlightenment under the bodhi tree, when he summoned the earth goddess, Sthavara, to bear witness to his attainment of enlightenment. The right hand, placed upon the right knee in earth-pressing mudra, and complemented by the left hand, which is held flat in the lap in dhyana mudra of meditation, symbolizes the union of method and wisdom, samasara and nirvana.

The head faces slightly forward, the eyes are half-closed and eyebrows and lines for the nose are all joined as one. The lips turn up slightly at the corners. The prominent elongated earlobes reflect back to the days before his enlightenment, when he wore heavy earrings as the Indian Prince Siddhartha and the hairstyle (ushnisha) is akin to neat rows of peppercorns. The figure wears the simple robes of a monk. His right shoulder has been left bare. Figure sits on high tiered throne adorned with lotus decorations.

Good condition. Gorgeous deep dark patina. Age-related wear, minor corrosion and green oxidization. Traces of gild. Dirt, soil and dust. Size approx. 21,0cm x 14,2cm x 8,6cm. Weight c. 1215g.