Asian art

Unfinished Buddha Statue

Unfinished Buddha Statue

This Unfinished Buddha statue, currently located in Karmawibhangga, is believed to be originated from the largest stupa of Borobudur. The name itself suggests that this Buddhist art is not completed due to unknown reason. When observed the hands of the statue are not fully carved. The right arm is longer than the left and one of the shoulders is bigger than the other.

Historical accounts of the Unfinished Buddha statue

The original location of the statue has been a subject of dispute. There are various beliefs regarding this matter. Whatever may be the original location, it was found inside a hollow chamber of the large stupa at Borobudur monument. Some scholars believe that the statue is unfinished because it was deemed flawed. It was thought that destroying a Buddha statue will just make oneself guilt so the supervisor may have placed it in the stupa simply to get rid of it.

The unfinished Buddha statue was found only in the early 20th century by Theodore Van Erp who supervised the restoration of Borobudur. He found the main stupa was empty but discovered the Unfinished Buddha buried in the dirt inside it. At the time, he didn't find any record regarding the statue. Therefore, he placed it under a pili tree next to the temple. By observing the statue he felt that the statue was a failed one and was thrown away. Even Prof. Soekmono supported his opinion because he learned that the statue was never mentioned in the time of Borobudur's recovery in the era of Raffles in 1814.

Bernard Kempers also agreed on the opinion since he found out that there was a same misshaped Buddha statue  in India from the Chinese record of 604 CE.

Currently, the statue is placed at Karmawibhangga Museum located at the Archeological Park around Borobudur.

Opinions based on the Buddha statue

It is believed that the unfinished Buddha placed inside the stupa has a symbol within the statue. Many people have postulated their own reasons. One of them is the belief as the symbol of the Adi Buddha. It is because of the interpretation of its imperfect form. It shows the local genius of the artists of that time. The imperfect form describes moksha: from the existence into the non-existence, from rupa into arupa.

Some scholars also assumed that the unfinished Buddha in the center of Borobudur is the symbol of Shakyamuni. They assumed this on the basis of the Avatamsaka Sutra which was taught by Sakyamuni himself immediately after the enlightenment.

This assumption is also supported by the fact that the unfinished Buddha statue shows the bhumisparsa mudra. This mudra was first displayed by Sakyamuni to call the earth as his witness for his enlightenment. Meanwhile, as for Vairochana Buddha, he is displayed with dharmachakra mudra Buddhas of the upper three terraces of Borobudur. Also in Buddhist iconographies throughout Asia, various forms of Buddhas displaying dharmachakra mudra are associated with Vairochana.

W.F. Sttuterheim, a Dutch archeologist, in his Sanghyang Kamahayanikan text mentioned that Borobudur has 505 Buddha statues. It is believed that the highest embodiment statue is the statue of Bhatara Buddha who is invisible. In the present context, if anyone counts the Buddha statues at Borobudur it will be only 504. Hence, Sttuterheim concluded that the unfinished Buddha statue is the Bhatara Buddha.

Statues at Antique Buddha Statues

The Buddha Statues here at Antique Buddha Statues are of high quality collected from many different countries. All of the Buddha statues for sale  are fully finished and are of high quality. Check our gallery for many more Buddha statues stored in our place.

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View our all Buddha statues in our collection

Old bronze Nepali Buddha statue

Old bronze Nepali Buddha statue

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Very early Jain statue with inscriptions

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Bronze Nepali Medicine Buddha statue

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Very special bronze Burmese Buddha statue

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Old wooden Burmese Mandalay Buddha

Old wooden Burmese Mandalay Buddha

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Old bronze Nepali Buddha statue

Old bronze Nepali Buddha statue

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Special antique marble Jain statue

Special antique marble Jain statue

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Special antique bronze Shan Buddha statue

Special antique bronze Shan Buddha statue

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Old bronze Burmese Buddha statue

Old bronze Burmese Buddha statue

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Antique wooden Burmese Mandalay Buddha statue

Antique wooden Burmese Mandalay Buddha statue

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Old marble Burmese Buddha statue

Old marble Burmese Buddha statue

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Old Burmese Buddha statue

Old Burmese Buddha statue

1,600 euro
Old bronze Nepali Buddha statue

Old bronze Nepali Buddha statue

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Antique bronze Thai Sukhothai Buddha statue

Antique bronze Thai Sukhothai Buddha statue

1,600 euro
Old bronze Nepali Buddha statue

Old bronze Nepali Buddha statue

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Old bronze Nepali Medicine Buddha

Old bronze Nepali Medicine Buddha

250 euro
Special high quality bronze Nepali Dipankar Buddha

Special high quality bronze Nepali Dipankar Buddha

5,500 euro
Antique bronze Thai Rattanakosin Buddha statue

Antique bronze Thai Rattanakosin Buddha statue

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Special antique bronze Nepali Buddha statue

Special antique bronze Nepali Buddha statue

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Antique bronze Thai Rattanakosin Buddha

Antique bronze Thai Rattanakosin Buddha

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Antique Japanese Amida Buddha statue

Antique Japanese Amida Buddha statue

2,950 euro
Antique wooden Burmese Mandalay Buddha

Antique wooden Burmese Mandalay Buddha

3,500 euro
Old wooden Buddha carving with monks

Old wooden Buddha carving with monks

950 euro
Antique Buddha statue without face

Antique Buddha statue without face

150 euro
Antique bronze Thai Rattanakosin Buddha

Antique bronze Thai Rattanakosin Buddha

900 euro
Antique Jain statue from an Indian temple

Antique Jain statue from an Indian temple

900 euro
Antique bronze Burmese Shan Buddha

Antique bronze Burmese Shan Buddha

400 euro
Antique marble Jain statue

Antique marble Jain statue

700 euro
Antique bronze Thai Rattanakosin Buddha

Antique bronze Thai Rattanakosin Buddha

1,250 euro
Antique wooden Burmese Shan Buddha

Antique wooden Burmese Shan Buddha

150 euro
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