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8 hits

  • Thumbnail for Parinirvana of the Buddha, cave 26
    Parinirvana of the Buddha, cave 26

    This carving of the parinirvana of the Buddha Sakyamuni includes figures of monks receiving teaching from the Buddha, emphasizing the importance of the Buddha as a teacher even as he was dying. Cave 26.

  • Thumbnail for Buddha seated in teaching pose
    Buddha seated in teaching pose

    Seated in a throne-like setting, the Buddha is depicted with his hands in the teaching pose. His feet rest on a lotus, symbol of enlightenment, and supernatural beings are carved around him, ostensibly also attending to his teachings. The throne was constructed in the shape of a stupa within the cave, with ample room around it for monks and pilgrims to circumambulate the image.

  • Thumbnail for Parinirvana of the Buddha, cave 26 (close-up 2, without flash)
    Parinirvana of the Buddha, cave 26 (close-up 2, without flash)

    A close-up view of the head of the Buddha at his parinirvana in Cave 26.

  • Thumbnail for Ajanta Caves, panorama view from the vantage of the earliest caves
    Ajanta Caves, panorama view from the vantage of the earliest caves

    A view of the series of caves from the perspective of the earliest caves in the group. Though not visible in this photo, the builders constructed small channels through the caves to guide water from the waterfalls into and through the living areas for the convenience of the monks.

  • Thumbnail for Buddha in seated lotus position, behind unadorned rectangular doorway
    Buddha in seated lotus position, behind unadorned rectangular doorway

    This Buddha figure, seated in the lotus position, is an early sculpture demonstrating the dharmacakra mudra, the hand gesture of teaching. A traditional depiction of the Buddha Sakyamuni as Teacher.

  • Thumbnail for Standing Buddha in Stupa, Chaitya Hall, cave 19
    Standing Buddha in Stupa, Chaitya Hall, cave 19

    This standing Buddha figure within a stupa-like structure is placed within a large chaitya hall, a cave where monks gathered for teaching and community ritual practices. The straight, rigid form of this Buddha is reminiscent of figures of Jain tirthankaras, with whom early Buddhist monks shared many ideas and practices. The Buddha is depicted with the royal headdress of an aristocratic person but in the ascetic simplicity of an unclothed body.

  • Thumbnail for Parinirvana of the Buddha, cave 26 (close up)
    Parinirvana of the Buddha, cave 26 (close up)

    A close up of the head of the Buddha at his parinirvana, reclining peacefully on an ornate pillow, with his face toward his disciples and followers.

  • Thumbnail for Ajanta Caves, sedan chair
    Ajanta Caves, sedan chair

    A weary or infirm tourist or pilgrim can now sit in a sedan chair carried by two men hirerd to carry them up and down the walkway outside the caves.