The World of Esoteric Buddhist Sculpture
Japanese Gallery (Honkan) Room 14 : March 19, 2019 (Tue) - June 23, 2019 (Sun)
Esoteric Buddhism first appeared in India around the 5th century. The influence of Hinduism led to the emergence of unique Buddhas with several faces and arms, a characteristic of Hindu deities.
During the 7th century, Esoteric Buddhist faith crystallized around the figure of Dainichi Nyorai (Skt. Mahavairocana), a deity said to be the source of all creation. It was believed enlightenment could be attained through the realization that humans and Dainichi Nyorai were essentially one and the same.
This thematic exhibition introduces this unique world of Esoteric Buddhist deities, principally through items from Tokyo National Museum's collection. It can be enjoyed together with the special exhibition National Treasures of To-ji Temple; Kukai and the Sculpture Mandala, held in the Heiseikan from March 26 to June 2.