Gallery XI – The Body, Speech and Mind of the AdiBhuddha

The Buddhist view of the true nature of existence appears in the form of art and text. The nature of the Buddha, the essence of his teachings, Absolute Truth-these represent the three aspects of the Absolute.

Buddhahood manifests itself in the phenomenal world in the three aspects of Body, Speech and Mind. In every temple throughout the Himalayan Buddhist region the Body, Speech and Mind of the Buddha are present in the form of statues, stupas and religious texts.

In presenting the Body of the Buddha, Buddhist art is attempting the impossible- making the formlessness and emptiness of this abstract concept accessible to practitioners through the iconography of Vajradhara and Samantahbadhra. However, even for someone who still is mired in the phenomenal world this art is still striking in its numinosity, since it neither disregards the world of sensual experience nor loses itself in it, but rather makes transparent its hidden core.

The omnipresent Mind of the Buddha is represented by stupas. In its absolute truth the stop symbolizes the indestructible, the unconditioned, that which is beyond words and concepts, that which is the Mind of the Buddha.

As the representation of the words of the Buddha, books contain the teachings that lead to enlightenment. The Buddha was straightforward and clear, like the words he spoke.