Hinduism: Many different sects of Hinduism. Belief in the infinite variety of the divine: nature, gods, humans. Orthodox Hindus accept the Vedic (ancient Sanskrit) texts as divine. Vedic texts assign Brahmins (a caste of ritual specialists). Enlightenment, or reaching Nirvana, ends the cycle, through good deeds and living a devotional life to charities, religious fervor, and love of all.
Buddism: Teaches individuals how to cope in the world full or misery. Buddha, Siddhartha, when he was a prince first, rejected worldly concerns and courtly life and decided to live in the country. Believes in reincarnation, a cycle of birth and rebirth. Enlightenment, or reaching Nirvana, ends the cycle, through good deeds and living a devotional life to charities, religious fervor, and love of all.
Jainism: Teaches that the way to liberation and bliss is to live a life of harmlessness and renunciation. The aim of Jain life is to achieve liberation of the soul.
CONTENT: What do you see?
FORM: The details (what you see more exactly). How the artist delivers the content.
CONTEXT: Everything NOT observable.
FUNCTION: The intended purpose of the work.
184. Jowo Rinpoche, enshirined in the Jokhang Temple
192. Great Stupa at Sanchi
- plan and elevation
- North Gate
195. Longmen caves
198. Borobudur Temple
The arts of South and Southeast Asia represent some of the world’s oldest, most diverse, and most sophisticated visual traditions. Many of the world’s great religious and philosophic traditions developed in these regions with distinctive religious art forms to support the beliefs and practices. India’s ancient worldview that dominated South Asia:
a: differentiated earthly and cosmic realms of existence,
b: recognized certain sites or beings as sacred,
c: understood time and life as cyclic.
The religions developed - Hinduism, Buddism, Jainism, Sikhism - sought spiritual development, release, or divine union through religious methodologies and social practices. Adding to India’s worldview were preexisting animistic and popular beliefs from Southeast Asia from India’s attempts at colonization. Religious practices are iconic, and figural imagery of divinities and revered teachers plays a prominent role. South and Southeast Asia also supported foreign cultures and religions including Greco-Roman, Christianity, and Islamic cultures from West and Central Asia. Islamic influence is strong in India, Malaysia, and Indonesia, due to partial control of Islamic sultanates from 1000 - 2000 CE. Today, South and Southeast Asia have the world’s largest Muslim population. Architecture is frequently religious in function. Temples intended to house deities or shrines were constructed or rock cut. Rock cut caves containing Buddhist imagery, shrines, stupas, and monastic spaces span from India through Central Asia to China. I slamic architecture takes two major forms: secular (forts & palaces) and religiou s (mosques & tombs). Islamic mosques are decorated with non-figural imagery, including calligraphy and vegetal forms. All mosques have a Qibla wall facing Mecca, with a Mihrab, a focus for prayer. Artistic and architectural traditions are deeply rooted in Asian aesthetics and cultural practices. Painting styles in India favor contour drawing of forms over modeling, and calligraphy was an important art form in Islamic art in architecture, decorative objects, ceramic tiles, and manuscripts. Practice of Asian religions necessitated the development of novel art and architecture forms to support them. The cultures were interconnected through trade and politics and trade greatly affecting development of art and culture by way of the Silk Route and maritime networks. These routes were vital for the transmission of cultural ideas and practices.
pluralism: unity in diversity
all life is sacred
polytheism: the belief in many gods
the belief in the connectedness of life
the honoring of the caste system
the belief that the obsession of the senses and material life will be the ruin of the spiritual life
honoring your ancestors and their traditions
belief that the attachment to materialism and the senses if the root of all unhappiness
Common Themes of Buddism