Through the practice of meditation, you open yourself to yourself, you become more aware of the world you’re live in. The development of awareness here is a bit like having cataracts removed; you didn’t know your vision was so obscured until you finally see a brilliant yellow daffodil in the field. Suddenly you begin to feel your world. One of the world’s finest galleries of Buddhist art is found in 492 of the Mogao caves near Dun-Huang, a Silk Road oasis in northwestern China. Carved between the fourth and 14th centuries, the caves offer a time capsule of an ancient world. One of Mogao’s creative peaks came during the seventh and eighth centuries, when China projected both openness and power. The Silk Road was booming, Buddhism was flourishing, and Dun-Huang was paying fealty to the Chinese capital. The Tang Dynasty cave painters displayed a fully confident Chinese style, covering whole walls with minutely detailed Buddhist narratives whose color, movement, and naturalism made the imaginative landscape come alive. This painting shows the Buddha and his chief disciple Ananda, which is a partial image in Cave 45 of Mogao caves. The natural, fluid poses of the Buddha and his disciple characterize the High Tang period (AD 684 – 755), when historians say both Buddhism and art reached their highest expression in the grottoes.
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