Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

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Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

Postby Indrajala » Tue Nov 02, 2010 4:50 pm

...I mean this scroll from the 9th century portrays the prince clearly as Chinese:

Image

The top is where the prince left the east gate and encountered an elderly person and then asked about it.

The bottom is where he left south gate and encountered an ill person and then asked about it.

Bless the artist. :namaste:

This is actually really interesting because it shows you how someone in 9th century China would have envisioned what they were reading about.
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Re: Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

Postby Astus » Tue Nov 02, 2010 5:23 pm

What about modern versions? Nevertheless, the way we picture buddha is a romantic form and have little to do with "real", though we might call it the real buddha.
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T51n2076, p461b24-26)
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Re: Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

Postby Indrajala » Tue Nov 02, 2010 5:36 pm

Does anyone know who the Indian looking character is in the middle part of this painting?

It is interesting that everyone else is decked out in Chinese garments, but one character looks like Buddha or Bodhisattva.

Image
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Re: Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

Postby Individual » Tue Nov 02, 2010 6:18 pm

Was Jesus white?
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Re: Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

Postby catmoon » Wed Nov 03, 2010 10:24 am

Well he spoke English in the Bible, so he must have been. Probably British, the dialect is evidence.
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Re: Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

Postby shinchan » Fri Nov 05, 2010 12:18 pm

I've heard (but have not read it myself) that in the only physical description of him in the Tripitaka he is described as having blue eyes! So maybe a better question would be: was Buddha white? After all, the ruling class in India at the time were descended from Indo-european invaders. Blue eyes are recessive and unheard of in India but if two light skinned Indians who both carried that recessive gene were to conceive, it would be possible.

If Buddhism was founded by a white guy then no one can ever again criticize me for adopting an asian religion. :tongue:
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Re: Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

Postby Individual » Fri Nov 05, 2010 3:05 pm

He's also described as having blue body hair and a gigantic tongue
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Re: Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

Postby Indrajala » Fri Nov 05, 2010 5:15 pm

shinchan wrote:I've heard (but have not read it myself) that in the only physical description of him in the Tripitaka he is described as having blue eyes! So maybe a better question would be: was Buddha white? After all, the ruling class in India at the time were descended from Indo-european invaders. Blue eyes are recessive and unheard of in India but if two light skinned Indians who both carried that recessive gene were to conceive, it would be possible.

If Buddhism was founded by a white guy then no one can ever again criticize me for adopting an asian religion. :tongue:


There was Hellenic Buddhism. After Alexander conquered Persia and much of Central Asia there were Buddhist Greek Kings.

Unfortunately there is a perception in some people that non-Asians can't be Buddhist, as if a certain ethnic background is somehow a requirement.
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Re: Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

Postby fragrant herbs » Fri Nov 05, 2010 9:16 pm

Individual wrote:Was Jesus white?

You beat me to it. I was going to say, No more than Jesus being white.
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Re: Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

Postby spiritnoname » Fri Nov 05, 2010 10:33 pm

Buddha was white.
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Re: Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

Postby spiritnoname » Fri Nov 05, 2010 10:45 pm

I actually read that he was white.

In one sutta the Buddha's wife told her son Rahula about her father, his shoulders were broad and he was tall, had golden hair and blue eyes. I tried to look that passage up again, haven't been able to, I don't even remember what book of the nikayas it was in.
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Re: Buddha's Appearance

Postby Will » Sat Nov 06, 2010 5:17 pm

Do not know if there is another source: http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/vandana02.pdf

Blue eyes, black hair, bright golden skin
Revealing one essence: this means the inherently pure, complete, luminous essence, which is pure of its own nature. -- Fa-tsang
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Re: Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

Postby spiritnoname » Sat Nov 06, 2010 6:38 pm

Ahh! Will you're amazing! I have looked for a copy of that for years, I think I read it first while flipping though a book in a library as a kid.

Looks like I misread some of it though, no golden hair haha.

You know what's interesting? The blue eyes.
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Re: Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

Postby Hillman » Sat Nov 06, 2010 8:49 pm

Buddha looked like Keanu Reeves.
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Re: Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

Postby nirmal » Fri Nov 12, 2010 6:24 pm

I think he was a Punjabi.He liked to eat ladoo, jelaybi,'rigma saag' and chapati.Of course he did not wear a turban because at that time the Talibans had bought over all the turban cloth from all over the world.If not he would surely be wearing a turban.
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Re: Was Shakyamuni Chinese?

Postby Luke » Fri Nov 12, 2010 7:15 pm

shinchan wrote: Blue eyes are recessive and unheard of in India but if two light skinned Indians who both carried that recessive gene were to conceive, it would be possible.

No, blue eyes are not unheard of in India, but they are were unheard of among Native Americans--which is why there are some websites talking about the "myth of the blue-eyed," but "Indian" means "Native American" on those sites.

Blue eyes are most common in Northern Europe and Central Europe and to a lesser degree in Southern Europe (Spain and Portugal are best examples, where 1-49% of the people are blue-eyed, through migration of Northern European and Central European settlers) and southern Central Asia; Afghanistan and Pakistan are a notable example.[30] They are also found in parts of North Africa,[31] West Asia, and South Asia,[32] in particular the northern areas of India, largely Kashmir. Pakistan and Iran also have a considerable population of blue eyed people.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eye_color

Check out these pictures of blue-eyed Indians (from India!):
http://img450.imageshack.us/img450/1584 ... boy7qg.jpg
http://www.pbase.com/image/110109182
http://api.ning.com/files/55JHohDRTv1o2 ... ryarai.jpg

Here's an interesting article which says that all blue-eyed people are relatives! I don't know anything about genetics, so I can't verify whether it's true or not.
http://webcenters.netscape.compuserve.c ... eyedpeople
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