History Community ~ All Empires Homepage


This is the Archive on WORLD Historia, the old original forum.

 You cannot post here - you can only read.

 

Here is the link to the new forum:

  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Events   Register Register  Login Login

Forum LockedHellenic influence on Buddhism

 Post Reply Post Reply
Author
sreenivasarao s View Drop Down
Housecarl
Housecarl


Joined: 02-Apr-2007
Location: India
Status: Offline
Points: 115
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sreenivasarao s Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Hellenic influence on Buddhism
    Posted: 10-Apr-2007 at 16:08

Hellenic influence on Buddhism 

The interaction between Hellenistic Greece and Buddhism started with Alexander’s expedition into India during 334 BCE. Following Alexander's death in 323 BCE his empire fragmented with each of his generals assuming charge of a portion of the empire. In the process, Seleucus became the king of the land that stretched into India .In the succeeding periods, spread over three hundred years, this kingdom again split into smaller ones. However, Buddhism flourished all along under these Indo-Greek kings. The friendly relations between Greek and Buddhist cultures continued until about 5th century.

During these long years, just as Buddhism spread its influence in the Hellenistic world particularly around Alexandria the Greek culture in turn exerted its influence on Buddhism.

Some scholars opine that Greek-Buddhist interaction lead to evolution of Mahayana branch of Buddhism, introducing the “man-god” treatment of the Buddha as is done with Hellenic gods. Further, the representation of Buddha in human form also appeared to be an offshoot of Hellenic influence on Buddhism.

Until around the first century, the Buddha was represented by a pair of footprints .The human image of the Buddha was not projected either in sculptures or in paintings. It was only after the advent of Ghandhara art (of Greco-Roman origin that flourished largely during the Kushan dynasty) the image of the Buddha as we know today took shape.  These artists, while retaining their classical conceptions of the human form presented to the world a Greek-featured Buddha, dressed in a toga and seated in yoga pose. Thus, the Gandharan style represented a union of classical, Indian and Hellenic elements

Apart from this ,while interpreting the Buddhist legends ( Jathaka tales), the Gandhara School incorporated many motifs and techniques from classical Roman art, including vine scrolls, cherubs bearing garlands, tritons, and centaurs. The Gandhar craftsmen thus made a significant contribution to Buddhist art in their depiction of events in Buddha’s life. The basic iconography, however, remained Indian

Albert Gruenwedel (1856 -1935), a German Indologist, thought that Hellenic deities were traceable in Ghandara art. According to him, Apollo served as the model for Buddha images. The Gandhara school , he said , drew upon the anthropomorphic traditions of Roman religion and represented the Buddha with a youthful Apollo-like face, dressed in garments resembling those seen on Roman imperial statues .He also remarked that the types of Ghandara school were traceable in Buddhist religious paintings of Tibet , China and Japan.

There is interesting similarity here, though not directly related to the Buddha subject. Until Christianity took root in Greece, there was no representation of Christ in human form. The early Christian scrolls etc. indicated Christ with the figure of a fish. Some scholars (Latourette 1975: 572) consider the mage of Christ Pantocrator ("Christ, Ruler of All") is modeled after the great statue of Zeus enthroned at Olympia and it remains a central icon of the Eastern Orthodox Church

Edited by sreenivasarao s - 10-Apr-2007 at 16:11
Back to Top
olvios View Drop Down
Immortal Guard
Immortal Guard
Avatar

Joined: 20-Apr-2007
Location: Greece
Status: Offline
Points: 561
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote olvios Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Apr-2007 at 14:00
Do  you know of any books on  the subject?
http://www.hoplites.net/
Back to Top
sreenivasarao s View Drop Down
Housecarl
Housecarl


Joined: 02-Apr-2007
Location: India
Status: Offline
Points: 115
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sreenivasarao s Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14-May-2007 at 14:12

Dear Olvios,
I am sorry. I did not notice your thread, earlier. Somehow, this post got  entered twice on the page. I was following the other post, which carries no comments. It was my incompetence.  Sorry.

On the subject of Greek influence on Buddhist Art, there are a large number of books.  The earliest authoritative work is “Buddhist Art in India by Albert Gruenwedel, a German Indologist. He discusses, in detail, the Art of Ghandara and says, among other things, Apollo served as the model for Buddha images. He also covers the Greek and Persian influence on the sculptures found in the North West region of India. 

Following his lead many others, notably Sir John Marshall (The Buddhist art of Gandhara), continued the process of identifying shades of other Greek deities in the images of the deities of the Buddhist pantheon. For instance, they thought they found representations of Herakles in Vajrapani , one of the earliest Bodhisattvas of Mahayana Buddhism; and Tyche in Hariti, the Buddhist goddess of childbearing and parenting. Similarly, Atlas and the Greek wind god Boreas found their counter parts in other Buddhist deities.

In this process Buddha’s representation in various forms/ poses - standing, sitting, teaching, sleeping etc. came under scrutiny. Each type of representation and each style of clothing, hair etc. were traced back to one or the other form of Greek/Roman deity. You can follow a set of books along this thread, in case you are interested.

There is another set of books, which use the silk route to string their narrative. These books, invariably, discuss the Ghandra art. I am not familiar with most of the books of this genre. Among these, I presume the following are better known .There may be many other good works that I am not aware.

 Peter Hopkirk’s Foreign Devils on the Silk Road. Amherst: The University of Massachusetts Press, 1984.

Richard Foltz’s  Religions of the Silk Road., St. Martin’s Griffin  ,
New York (1999).

Kathryn Selig Brown’s   Buddhist Sculpture Along the Trade Routes. Gainesville, FL: Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art, 1998

I heard that a collection of essays edited by Raymond Allchin and others is good. It is titled
Gandharan Art In Context: East-West Exchanges At The Crossroads Of Asia, Edited by Raymond Allchin, Bridget Allchin, Neil Kreitman, Elizabeth Errington. The Ancient India and Iran Trust, Cambridge, 1997.

I heard that there is an expensive – coffee table type of – book edited Kurita, carrying plenty of beautiful photographs. The book is in two volumes and the first volume is devoted to picture/photos of Ghandara art. It is called:

Gandharan Art: I The Buddha's Life Story Author Isao Kurita Publisher Art Media Resources, Ltd., 2003.

Now, I cannot afford to buy many books. My book -buying days, you can say, is “history”. (Please read my post - why we love to blog? – in Tavern). My acquaintance with recent/current publications is scanty. I am sorry I have not been of much help. I am sorry for the delay too.

Please keep in touch.

 Regards

 

 



Edited by sreenivasarao s - 14-May-2007 at 14:14
Back to Top
olvios View Drop Down
Immortal Guard
Immortal Guard
Avatar

Joined: 20-Apr-2007
Location: Greece
Status: Offline
Points: 561
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote olvios Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14-May-2007 at 16:58
Thank you!

Edited by Spartakus - 16-May-2007 at 14:36
http://www.hoplites.net/
Back to Top
Ptino View Drop Down
Immortal Guard
Immortal Guard
Avatar

Joined: 12-May-2007
Location: Brazil
Status: Offline
Points: 0
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ptino Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-May-2007 at 13:50
Do you know any good website with pics from archaeological findinds of the Indo-Greek Kingdom?

Edited by Ptino - 16-May-2007 at 13:51
"This is Sparta!". - Leonidas 1 (300 movie)
Back to Top
sreenivasarao s View Drop Down
Housecarl
Housecarl


Joined: 02-Apr-2007
Location: India
Status: Offline
Points: 115
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sreenivasarao s Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-May-2007 at 07:14
Originally posted by Ptino Ptino wrote:

Do you know any good website with pics from archaeological findinds of the Indo-Greek Kingdom?

Dear Ptino

I suggest the following few sites of the type you mentioned. I am not sure this was what you had in  mind. But surely, this is not all .There may be  other better / more informative sites that I am not aware. In any case, you can  explore with these and follow up with other references you come across. I hope all the links work.Good Luck.

Regards

A. Some web sites on the subject- and  with archeology

ARCHIVE: A JOURNAL OF UNDERGRADUATE HISTORY
THE GRECO-BACTRIAN MIRAGE: RECONSTRUCTING A
HISTORY OF HELLENISTIC
BACTRIA
BY KIRK RAPPE

http://uwho.rso.wisc.edu/Archive/Archive%204%20greco%20bactrian%20mirage.pdf

 Look for ARTS & ANTIQUITIES & IMAGE GALLERIES  in this site It is a collection of digitalized photographs and maps

http://www.paolaraffetta.com.ar/WWWVL/Transoxiana.html#ARTS

 New Findings in Ancient Afghanistan

http://www.gengo.l.u-tokyo.ac.jp/~hkum/bactrian.html

           B. Informative sites on Indo Greek Kingdoms( I think they are good)

 Indo Greek Kingdoms

http://www.reference.com/browse/wiki/Indo-Greek_Kingdom

 Greeks in Central Asia

http://www.archive.gr/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=194

 Graeco-Indian Kingdom

http://pl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedysta:Picus_viridis/Grecy_w_Indiach

 C.Other sites on Indo Greek / Bactrian Kingdoms

 Ancient Coinage of Baktria

http://www.wildwinds.com/coins/greece/baktria/i.html

 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indo-Greek

 http://www.answers.com/topic/indo-parthian-kingdom

 http://ancienthistory.about.com/gi/dynamic/offsite.htm?zi=1/XJ/Ya&sdn=ancienthistory&cdn=education&tm=17&f=10&tt=14&bt=1&bts=1&zu=http%3A//www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/kush/hd_kush.htm

 
          D.Images

http://images.google.com/images?hl=en&q=Indo%20Greek%20Kingdoms&btnG=Search&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&um=1&sa=N&tab=wi

http://images.google.com/images?ie=UTF-8&q=obopearachchi-jpg

http://www.dbaol.com/armies/army_50_figure_1.htm

 
         Kabul Museum

http://archaeology.about.com/gi/dynamic/offsite.htm?zi=1/XJ/Ya&sdn=archaeology&cdn=education&tm=226&f=10&tt=14&bt=1&bts=1&zu=http://www.afghan-web.com/history/

 

 

 

 

 




Edited by sreenivasarao s - 17-May-2007 at 22:35
Back to Top
Laberia View Drop Down
Immortal Guard
Immortal Guard
Avatar

Joined: 17-May-2007
Location: Albania
Status: Offline
Points: 0
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Laberia Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-May-2007 at 20:01

That Budhism might have been influenced by ancient Greece that maybe true.But to use the term hellenistic is different,the word Hellen was never used by any ancient author to my knowlege,so is a later term which is subject to debate in another topic.ciao.



Edited by Laberia - 17-May-2007 at 20:02
Back to Top
sreenivasarao s View Drop Down
Housecarl
Housecarl


Joined: 02-Apr-2007
Location: India
Status: Offline
Points: 115
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sreenivasarao s Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-May-2007 at 01:07

 

Dear Laberia, Thank you for your observation. I used the terms broadly to imply Greco Roman influence.


A. The On-line dictionary says (I am reproducing only the relevant portions)


Hel·len·ic
 audio  (h-lnk) KEY  
ADJECTIVE: Of or relating to the ancient Hellenes, their language, or their history; Greek

Hel·le·nis·tic  audio  (hl-nstk) KEY   also Hel·le·nis·ti·cal   (-t-kl) KEY  
ADJECTIVE:..2. Of or relating to postclassical Greek history and culture from the death of Alexander the Great to the accession of Augustus.
Relating to or in the style of the Greek art or architecture of this period.

 
B. As per
Wikipedia (I am reproducing only the relevant portions)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hellenic
Hellenic
or Hellenes may refer to(among others)

·         Hellenic, anything related to Greece in general or Ancient Greece in particular

·         Hellenistic civilization, the spreading of Greek culture over the non-Greek peoples that were conquered by Alexander the Great

·         Hellenistic Greece, the period between the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BC and the annexation of the Greek peninsula and islands by Rome in 146 BC

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Hellenistic_Greece
Hellenistic
Greece

·         The traditional date for the end of the Ancient Greek period is the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BC. The following period is classed as Hellenistic. Not everyone treats the Ancient and Hellenic periods as distinct, however, and some writers treat the Ancient Greek civilization as a continuum running until the advent of Christianity in the third century AD.

·         The Hellenistic period of Greek history was the period between the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BC and the annexation of the Greek peninsula and islands by Rome in 146 BC. Although the establishment of Roman rule did not break the continuity of Hellenistic society and culture, which remained essentially unchanged until the advent of Christianity, it did mark the end of Greek political independence.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greco-Roman
Greco-Roman

·         The Greco-Roman period of history refers to the culture of the peoples who   were incorporated into the Roman Republic and Empire.

·         The time period begins with the Roman occupation of Greece in 146 BC and the subsequent merging of the Roman and Hellinistic cultures. The end of this period is a point of academic debate. The "classical" Greco-Roman period ends with the fall of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century AD.

 
I have used the terms , in the context, to refer to that Greco Roman culture which lasted till the end of fifth century AD.But its influence is present even today.

I agree with you, there could be a debate on this issue.

Thanks for the comment

 
Regards.

 



Edited by sreenivasarao s - 18-May-2007 at 01:15
Back to Top
Spartakus View Drop Down
Immortal Guard
Immortal Guard
Avatar
terörist

Joined: 22-Nov-2004
Location: Greece/Hellas
Status: Offline
Points: 4496
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Spartakus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-May-2007 at 13:23
Originally posted by Laberia Laberia wrote:

That Budhism might have been influenced by ancient Greece that maybe true.But to use the term hellenistic is different,the word Hellen was never used by any ancient author to my knowlege,so is a later term which is subject to debate in another topic.ciao.

 
You are totally incorrect. The very term "Greece" was never used by Ancient Hellens.It derives from Latin not from Ancient Hellenic. The only word used by Ancient Hellens for themselves was that, "Hellen"(Ελλην), and for their land "Hellas"(Ελλάς). All Ancient Hellen authors use these names.I do not know how you came up to actually say the contrary.
"There are worse crimes than burning books. One of them is not reading them. "
--- Joseph Alexandrovitch Brodsky, 1991, Russian-American poet, b. St. Petersburg and exiled 1972 (1940-1996)
Back to Top
sreenivasarao s View Drop Down
Housecarl
Housecarl


Joined: 02-Apr-2007
Location: India
Status: Offline
Points: 115
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sreenivasarao s Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-May-2007 at 13:30
Thank you Spartacus.
Thanks for the Clarification.
Regard
s
Back to Top
Yiannis View Drop Down
Sultan
Sultan
Avatar

Joined: 03-Aug-2004
Location: Neutral Zone
Status: Offline
Points: 2329
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Yiannis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-May-2007 at 13:42
Originally posted by Laberia Laberia wrote:

But to use the term hellenistic is different,the word Hellen was never used by any ancient author to my knowlege,so is a later term which is subject to debate in another topic.ciao.
 
 
 
Why do you say that?  
Hellenes was widelly used by all ancient Greeks to describe their nation. Hellenes in the wider meaning of the word appears in writing for the first time in an inscription by Echembrotus, dedicated to Heracles for his victory in the Amphictyonic Games,and refers to the 48th Olympiad (584 BC).
Thukidides mentions: "From the Hellenes there were the Ambraciots, Leucadians and 1000 Peloponnesian hoplites."
 
Alexander the Great said: "from all Hellenes except Lacedemonians"
 
Earlier appearances we find in Homer's Iliad, describing a Thessalian tribe and in Epirous, in Dodona, describing the tribe of S(H)elloi.
 
 
 
 
 
 
The basis of a democratic state is liberty. Aristotle, Politics

Those that can give up essential liberty to obtain a temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. Benjamin Franklin
Back to Top
Flipper View Drop Down
Arch Duke
Arch Duke
Avatar

Joined: 23-Apr-2006
Location: Flipper HQ
Status: Offline
Points: 1814
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Flipper Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-May-2007 at 14:17
Also check out these inscriptions: http://epigraphy.packhum.org/inscriptions/search?patt=ELLHNES#region1

As you can see the word Έλληνες (Hellenes) appears everywhere!

Also, i found an amazing text from Paros, from 263BC describing shortly the History of Greece until that year. From the time of Deucalion until the Ptolemys.

http://epigraphy.packhum.org/inscriptions/oi?ikey=77668&region=7&subregion=20&bookid=21&caller=search&start=1715&end=1725&start=6597&end=6608&start=13055&end=13065&start=16025&end=16035

Except from the amazing data provided by this unknown author, we also get the following information:

ἀφ’ οὗ Ἕλλην ὁ Δευκαλίωνος Φθιώτιδος ἐβασίλευσε καὶ Ἕλληνες ομάσθησαν, τὸ πρότερον Γραικοὶ καλούμενοι


Which means: After Hellen, son of Deucalion, ruled Phthiotis, they were called called Hellenes, those who were earlier called Greki (Greeks).

As we know the Greki were an epirotan tribe that got their name from Grecus. Also known for their colonization of Sicely.


Edited by Flipper - 18-May-2007 at 14:19


SĂĄ nu tar jag fram (k)niven va!
Back to Top
sreenivasarao s View Drop Down
Housecarl
Housecarl


Joined: 02-Apr-2007
Location: India
Status: Offline
Points: 115
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sreenivasarao s Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-May-2007 at 01:06
Originally posted by Ptino Ptino wrote:

Do you know any good website with pics from archaeological findinds of the Indo-Greek Kingdom?

Continuing ,please follow this links for -Regards
A detailed map of archaeological sites in Gandhara.
http://www.columbia.edu/itc/mealac/pritchett/00maplinks/early/gandhara/gandhara.html
 
The Kushan Empire at its greatest extent, c. 150 CE
http://www.columbia.edu/itc/mealac/pritchett/00maplinks/early/kushan/kushan.html

Back to Top
Aster Thrax Eupator View Drop Down
Arch Duke
Arch Duke
Avatar
Porphyrygenitus Augustii

Joined: 18-Jul-2006
Location: United Kingdom
Status: Offline
Points: 1923
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Aster Thrax Eupator Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-May-2007 at 12:23

Did you chaps hear that they found a coin from one of the Diodachi states near Northern India in Petersfield, Hampshire, England, UK? It's a weird thing, because one side has the etching of a hellenic king in full garb, but the other has a particually interesting picture...a Greek God with a buddhist headress and indian dress. It was in BBC history a while back

...weird...

"Don't raise your voice - we all know how lovely it is!"
Triano, in "Mosterella" by Plautus! Read it...now!
Back to Top
sreenivasarao s View Drop Down
Housecarl
Housecarl


Joined: 02-Apr-2007
Location: India
Status: Offline
Points: 115
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sreenivasarao s Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-May-2007 at 15:04
Yes.It is.weird...
Back to Top
sreenivasarao s View Drop Down
Housecarl
Housecarl


Joined: 02-Apr-2007
Location: India
Status: Offline
Points: 115
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sreenivasarao s Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-May-2007 at 10:29
Originally posted by Ptino Ptino wrote:

Do you know any good website with pics from archaeological findinds of the Indo-Greek Kingdom?

http://www.allempires.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=19686&PID=365974#365974
Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply
  Share Topic   

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down

Forum Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 11.10
Copyright ©2001-2017 Web Wiz Ltd.

This page was generated in 0.047 seconds.