PM NARENDRA MODI GIFTS SANDALWOOD BUDDHA STATUE TO JAPAN`S PM FUMIO KISHIDA.
Last Friday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi gifted a Sandalwood Buddha Statue from Karnataka to Japanese PM Fumio Kishida. The Buddha figure is made of pure sandalwood. It has hand carving along with traditional designs and natural scenes, created by an expert craftsperson. In this posture, Buddha is sitting in Dhyana mudra under the Bodhi tree. The Dhyana mudra is the mudra of meditation, concentration, and the attainment of spiritual perfection.
According to tradition, this mudra derives from the one assumed by the Buddha when meditating under the bodhi tree before his Enlightenment. The obverse of the image has intricate carvings of the Bodhi tree. The figure comes encased in a Kadamwood Jali Box. The Kadamba wood is considered auspicious in Indian culture. The designs on the exclusive Kadamwood Box are hand-carved by expert craftsmen in the most synchronized manner.
Imprints of birds and animals, the leitmotif of Indian art for countless generations, add a special quality to the final product. The art of sandalwood carving is an exquisite and ancient craft that has been practiced in Karnataka for centuries. This craft involves carving intricate designs into blocks of fragrant sandalwood and creating intricate sculptures, figurines & other decorative items.
Sandalwood tree (Santalum album), a species native to India, has been an important part of Indian culture for centuries, and it is widely regarded as one of the most valuable and prized woods in the world. Indian Sandalwood is one of the most precious herbs of Ayurveda. Sandalwood powder and essential oil are renowned for their many medicinal and spiritual uses. But the wood itself can be used in creating wonders in many different ways.
It has a distinctive fragrance and a smooth texture that makes it ideal for carving. Karnataka is home to some of the best sandalwood forests in the world. The state is also sometimes called ‘gandhadagudi’ – the Land of Sandalwood. Sandalwood is a precious and valuable wood and has become increasingly rare.
The state of Karnataka has also set up a Sandalwood Development Board to ensure that the precious sandalwood resources are sustainably managed. A government-sponsored sustainable harvesting program involves controlled harvesting of mature trees and replanting of saplings, ensuring that the resource is replenished.
This approach not only ensures the continued availability of sandalwood for handicrafts but also preserves the natural habitats of the sandalwood forests and supports the livelihoods of local artisans and craftsmen. The craft of sandalwood carving is a highly skilled and time-consuming process that requires great patience, precision, and attention to detail.
The carvers use a variety of tools, including chisels, knives, and saws, to carve the wood into intricate designs and shapes. The sandalwood carvings of Karnataka are known for their intricate designs and attention to detail. The craftsmen draw inspiration from a wide range of sources, including mythology, religion, and nature, and their creations often depict scenes from Hindu epics and mythological stories.