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Buddhist Symbols. Camera Shy…. It is said that the Buddha was reluctant to accept images of himself, as he did not like to be venerated as a person.

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camera shy
Camera Shy…
  • It is said that the Buddha was reluctant to accept images of himself, as he did not like to be venerated as a person.

To symbolise the Buddha in the very early art, one used mainly the Eight Spoked Wheel andthe Bodhi Tree, but also the Buddha\'s Footprints, an Empty Throne, a Begging Bowl and a Lion are used to represent him.

the dharmachakra
The Dharmachakra
  • has eight spokes, symbolising theEight-fold Noble Path.
  • The3 swirling segmentsin centre represent theBuddha, Dharma (the teachings) and Sangha(the spiritual community).
  • The wheel can also be divided into three parts, each representing an aspect ofBuddhist practice;the hub (discipline), the spokes (wisdom), and the rim (concentration).
bodhi tree
Bodhi Tree
  • Refers to the tree under which the Buddha achieved enlightenment
  • Tree worship was already part of the existing culture in India, so the development of the bodhi tree and leaf as a devotional symbol was a natural one.
  • A Bodhi Tree is grown in Buddhist centres
buddha s footprints
Buddha’s footprints
  • The story goes that prior to his death the Buddha left an imprint of his foot on a stone near Kusinara,

a reminder of his presence on earth.

the begging bowl
The Begging-bowl
  • shortly before the Buddha reached enlightenment, a young woman named Sujata offered him a bowl of milk-rice.
  • Monks go into the street with their bowl and eat only what is placed in there by others
the lion
The Lion
  • one of Buddhism\'s most potent symbols.
  • associated with regality, strength and power.
  • Buddha who tradition has it was a royal prince.
  • The Buddha\'s teachings are sometimes referred to as the \'Lion\'s Roar\', indicating their strength and power.
the lotus
The Lotus
  • Grows up from the mud through muddy water to blossom
  • Purification and enlightenment
  • the stem stands for the practice of Buddhist teachings which raise the mind above the (mud of) worldly existence, and gives rise to purity of mind.
  • Open blossom enlightenment
  • Closed blossom potential for enlightenment
the white elephant
The white elephant
  • The white elephant here symbolizes perfect wisdom and royal power
  • In India, an elephant is accounted the most sacred animal on earth.