The article aims at bringing into focus the connection of the Buddhist rock sculptures of Swat (ancient Uḍḍiyāna) with the concept of mārga. The nearly two hundred specimens so far recorded (dating to the seventh to eight centuries CE) intersperse a large-scale sacred topography. However, the rock sculptures were meant not only to mark pilgrimage paths but to enhance the pilgrim’s experience through suggestive homologies between images, nature, self-existence, revelation and journey. Also, based on material evidence, the paper explores the ritualistic aspects of such a distinctive sacred landscape. The case study is represented by the colossal Buddha of Jahanabad and its immediate surroundings, where a number of natural and artificial features concur in designing an energy spot especially suitable for rituals of purification and transformation.

Visual embodiments of the Buddhist mārga: Space, place and artistry in ancient Swat/Uḍḍiyāna

FILIGENZI, Anna
2020

Abstract

The article aims at bringing into focus the connection of the Buddhist rock sculptures of Swat (ancient Uḍḍiyāna) with the concept of mārga. The nearly two hundred specimens so far recorded (dating to the seventh to eight centuries CE) intersperse a large-scale sacred topography. However, the rock sculptures were meant not only to mark pilgrimage paths but to enhance the pilgrim’s experience through suggestive homologies between images, nature, self-existence, revelation and journey. Also, based on material evidence, the paper explores the ritualistic aspects of such a distinctive sacred landscape. The case study is represented by the colossal Buddha of Jahanabad and its immediate surroundings, where a number of natural and artificial features concur in designing an energy spot especially suitable for rituals of purification and transformation.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11574/172897
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