Himalayan Art Resources

Item: Shakyamuni Buddha - Avadana (teaching stories)

ཤཱཀྱ་ཐུབ་པ། 释迦牟尼佛
(item no. 7942)
Origin Location Tibet
Date Range 1700 - 1799
Lineages Gelug and Buddhist
Material Ground Mineral Pigment on Cotton
Collection Private
Notes about the Central Figure

Classification: Person

Appearance: Buddha

Gender: Male

Interpretation / Description

Shakyamuni Buddha surrounded by the Avadana stories #41-46. From a set of more than twenty-three paintings containing the one hundred and eight stories.

The one hundred stories are based on the Leaves of the Heaven Tree a text composed by the Kashmiri poet Kshemendra (11th century). That text in turn is based on the Avadana stories from the Buddhist Pali canon of authoritative Buddhist scripture.

The stories are identified by a cartouche, red in colour, in the shape of a tombstone. Each cartouche gives the story number along with the first few words of the stories title written in Tibetan script. Other inscriptions written against a red background can be seen in the composition but they are not in the shape of the cartouche nor do they have a story number.

(41) The Conversion of King Udrayana.
(42) The Results of Pandita's Generosity.
(43) The Pure Conduct of King Kanakavarna, top right, a story about giving culminating in a rain shower of jewels upon the entire kingdom.
(44) Hiranyapani's Hands of Gold, a story about actions in a previous birth.
(45) Ajatashatru's Treachery, the evil deeds of a king and the consequences.
(46) Kritajna Discovers the Power of Truth, previous life stories of the Buddha and Devadatta.

See a list of all of the stories.

Jeff Watt 8-2017

Bibliography: Leaves of the Heaven Tree, the Great Compassion of the Buddha by Padma Chopel, 19th century. (Based on the Bodhisattvavadanakalpata of Kshemendra, 11th century). Translated by Deborah Black. Berkeley: Dharma Publishing, 1997.

Related Items
Thematic Sets
Collection of Anna Maria Rossi & Fabio Rossi
Painting Set: Avadana Stories Main Page
Shakyamuni Buddha: Main Page