While many of us already appreciate the beauty of Buddha statues, perhaps fewer of us really understand their significance and value. For all the ways that a Buddha statue, painting, or motif can beautify your home and give it an Asian flair, the image of the Buddha also has a unique historical, religious and cultural essence that adds more to your home décor than you might have realized.
Buddha literally means, “The Awakened One,” and refers to the original Indian spiritual leader who founded the religion of Buddhism, a religion and practice that has spread not just all over Asia, but all over the world, and more and more Westerners discover its special qualities. The Buddha proclaimed to have achieved a heightened state of understanding and contentment known as “Enlightenment.” So, most Buddha images you see used in temple and home decoration represent this Buddha, his journey to Enlightenment, and a happy, healthy life.
Just as in yoga, the various poses you find Buddha in is called asanas, and the placement of their hands in to various positions is called mudras. For example, one popular Buddha image is that of the Meditating Buddha, in which the Buddha sits with both hands folded, face up in his lap. Since the Meditating Buddha signifies inner wisdom, emotional balance, and clarity, an image of this Buddha would make the perfect addition to a study, office, library or mantel.
Another such popular Buddha is the Protection Buddha. The Protection Buddha may be standing, but is usually sitting in a lotus position with his right hand raised, facing outward, and his left hand resting in his lap. Since the Protection Buddha offers courage and protection from fear, delusion, and anger, an image of this Buddha would make an apropos addition to a foyer or doorway.
There are so many Buddha images to add to your home, and you can choose according to what you value. For example, decorating with a “Begging Buddha” signifies compassion and care for all things, while decorating with a “Teaching Buddha” signifies wisdom, understanding, achieving your dreams and fulfilling your destiny – making it a great piece for a college dorm room or a teacher’s desk. A “Walking Buddha” signifies grace and internal beauty, while a “Medicine Buddha” signifies healing .
Especially popular in China, the “Laughing Buddha” is often endowed with a big belly and giant smile. According to lore, although poor and without possessions, the Laughing Buddha represents happiness and contentment in life.
So, the next time you shop for a new piece of Buddha art for your home, keep in mind the meaning of each image – what sort of blessings do you want bestowed on your living space?
You can get your own Buddha statues on-line: