Buddhist park. Terracotta Army
The Terracotta Army, which was discovered in March 1974 during the construction of an irrigation system near Mount Lishan in China, was recreated in Buddha Park in Portugal. The amazing find at first greatly frightened the workers who stumbled upon the statues of soldiers in full human height, buried in the ground. In the first minutes they were mistaken for real people.
The history of excavations of ceramic armada
It was difficult to immediately extract numerous sculptures:
large-scale excavations began in 1978;
intermittently lasted until 1986 – during this time thousands of statues of soldiers and horses were carefully excavated;
at the beginning of our millennium, statues of officials, musicians, acrobats were found, so from June 13, 2009, work continued.
Now it is reliably known that Mount Lishan is the necropolis of the first emperor of the Qin dynasty, where a terracotta army, an impressive collection of treasures and valuable handicrafts were buried with it.
The material for creating part of the statues was special local varieties of clay, which after firing are distinguished by their porous structure and rich colors from light cream to dark red and even black. Such ceramic products are called terracotta, which literally means “ground (clay) calcined” in Italian. Products are partially polished and not glazed. For better preservation, the statues were covered with an organic compound according to a special formula and painted.
The rest of the army was brought from other regions of China, which became known as a result of the study of material samples and, in particular, plant pollen that had fallen into clay. Most likely, the horses were made in the immediate vicinity, as they are heavy (about 200 kg). And some of the sculptures of people, weighing an average of 135 kg, were brought from other places, but which ones have not yet been clarified.
When the excavations are completed, it is not known, since many complications arose. For example, ancient statues turned out to be unstable to atmospheric manifestations and some of them crumbled. At present, according to various estimates, there are 7–9 thousand figures in the tomb. It is noteworthy that not a single identical pair of statues was found. All of them are unique – they have different poses, facial expressions, are painted differently.
The construction of the mausoleum in and around Lishan Mountain began in 247 BC. and lasted 38 years. According to some estimates, more than 70 thousand workers and artisans were involved in the work.
Emperor Qin Shihuandi was buried in his magnificent tomb in 210 BC. Now there is no one to ask why the emperor needed a great army in the afterlife. One can only assume that he sought to make a special impression and gain fame in the other world. An army of terracotta warriors was buried one and a half kilometers from the emperor’s mausoleum in a battle formation. Especially for this, the ancient builders dug many parallel crypts.
Statues of women, often holding a lotus in their hands.
The Indian goddess Lakshmi in the East has been worshiped for many centuries. Her name is translated from Sanskrit as happiness and she personifies an endless series of virtues and spiritual values, including beauty, love, peace, luck, breadth of mind and a desire for enlightenment. According to legend, the goddess Lakshmi appeared in a lotus flower in time immemorial, which floated on the surface of the waters of the pristine ocean. The goddess never leaves her Lotus, while often holding another Lotus in her hands. The popular belief says that if wealth was wound up in the house, then Lakshmi settled there, and if misfortunes fell, the goddess left the dwelling. In order to attract prosperity to the house and become more successful, many people in the East decorate their homes with images and Lakshmi figurines, before which they mantra meditate and chant.
Fu Dogs or Buddha Sky Lions
Dogs Foo (Foo Dogs) – these are mythical creatures that neutralize the evil influences of supernatural forces and various demons. Looking at the statues, one can often see the balls that dogs play with. According to popular belief, Fu dogs, placed as high as possible above the floor at the front door, maintain peace and harmony in the house. If there is something disturbing in front of the windows, for example, a cemetery or a hospital, then Fu dogs placed on the windowsill prevent bad energy from entering through the window. Often make statues of a Fu dog with a puppy. Such an image is intended to attract into the house the energy of prosperity and development, which is symbolized by a growing puppy.
So far no clear answer has been found why these mythical creatures are called differently – Fu Dogs, Buddha Heavenly Lions or Auspicious Lions. Perhaps confusion occurred due to the difference in the meaning of the same words in different languages. There are several unconfirmed versions. According to one legend, a small dog accompanied the Buddha on wanderings, and when she felt that the owner was tired, she turned into a huge lion and drove the Buddha on horseback. Since then, the lion’s roar represents the appearance of the Buddha. In addition, “Foo” from Chinese can be translated as “Buddha,” so the literal translation of Foo Dogs is Buddha Dogs.
The image of the dragon is traditionally used in many world cultures, for example, in Christianity and the ancient Vikings, among the Romans and among the eastern peoples. A Buddhist dragon is characterized in that it has horns, claws and scales with spikes on the ridge. Its ridge is quite long, and the dragon itself is associated with a flexible snake, endowed with paws. A dragon cannot be unequivocally attributed to evil or good powers – it is on its own mind and does not obey human laws. This dragon has the characteristics of a deity and is considered one of the magical animals to which both heaven and earth are accessible. The dragon represents wisdom, because he is invincible in argument and the depths of his knowledge cannot be measured. That is why the Chinese emperors, long before our era, chose the dragon as their symbol. Since then, the throne of the emperor was called the throne of the dragon, and his face – the face of the dragon.
The dragon, according to his admirers, produces lightning, after lightning comes rain, and then comes the time of fertility and prosperity. Such an associative series is found in ancient eastern literature and in folk traditions. Even now, in China, it is allegorically said about rain that the earth has connected with the dragon. This explains why the Dragon plays the role of a mediator of two worlds – earthly and heavenly, because He delivers the gifts of heaven in the form of blessed water to Earth. In addition, it is his responsibility to keep the halls of the gods on his ridge, not allowing them to fall to the ground.