Reinventing the Wheel: Paintings of Rebirth in Medieval Buddhist Temples

Reinventing the Wheel: Paintings of Rebirth in Medieval Buddhist Temples

by Stephen F. Teiser
     
 

ISBN-10: 0295986492

ISBN-13: 9780295986494

Pub. Date: 03/23/2007

Publisher: University of Washington Press

Awarded the Prix Stanislas Julien by the Academie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres

The Wheel of Rebirth is one of the most basic and popular images in Buddhist visual culture. For nearly two thousand years, artists have painted it onto the porches of Buddhist temples; preachers have used it to explain karmic retribution; and philosophers have invoked it to

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Overview

Awarded the Prix Stanislas Julien by the Academie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres

The Wheel of Rebirth is one of the most basic and popular images in Buddhist visual culture. For nearly two thousand years, artists have painted it onto the porches of Buddhist temples; preachers have used it to explain karmic retribution; and philosophers have invoked it to illuminate the contrast between ignorance and nirvana. In Reinventing the Wheel, noted scholar Stephen F. Teiser explores the history and varied interpretations of the Wheel of Rebirth, a circle divided into sections depicting the Buddhist cycle of transmigration.

Combining visual evidence with textual sources, Reinventing the Wheel shows how the metaphor of the wheel has been interpreted in divergent local traditions, from India to Tibet, Central Asia, and China. Teiser deftly shows how written and painted renditions of the wheel have animated local architectural sites and religious rituals, informing concepts of time and reincarnation and acting as an organizing principle in the cosmology and daily life of practicing Buddhists.

Engaging and accessible, this uniquely pan-Buddhist tour will appeal to anyone interested in Buddhist culture, as well as to scholars of religious studies, art history, architecture, philosophy, and textual studies.

University of Washington Press

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780295986494
Publisher:
University of Washington Press
Publication date:
03/23/2007
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
336
Product dimensions:
7.00(w) x 10.00(h) x (d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Table of Contents

Preface and Acknowledgments

1. Picturing Life and Death as a Wheel2. The Canonical Version of the Wheel of Rebirth3. Temples and Legends: Western India, 350-550 C.E.4. King Rudrayana's Painting of the Twelve Conditions5. La roue imaginaire en Chine6. Wheels for Meditation: Kumtura, Central Asia, Ninth Century7. Wheels in Cave Temples: Yulin, Gansu, Tenth Century8. Wheels in Esoteric Temples: Tabo, Western Tibet, Eleventh Century9. Wheels for Pilgrims: Baodingshan, Sichuan, Thirteenth Century10. Conclusions

Character GlossaryBibliographyIndex

University of Washington Press

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