Mahaparinirvana, The Conquest of Death Mahaparinirvana, The Conquest of Death Sukhothai Style, Ayutthaya Period, end of the 14th C. The Buddha reclines before his death in a posture, long canonical in South-east Asia, which shows not a dying man at all - much less one suffering mortally from his last supper, the fatal pork delicacies taken in the humble home of a low cast blacksmith - but one comfortably, even elegantly, recumbent and still alert. Gone are all the distressing reminders of illness and mortality - the grief-stricken clansmen (Malas), the bereaved disciplines, the perverse funeral pyre - which were de rigeur in earlier Buddhist art. Instead, here death is represented as the triumph over death itself, viz., mahaparinirvana, the great and final extinction of all the cycles of rebirth. Deathless extinction is here represented by the simple devise of laying the Sukhothai standing Buddha on his right side, and leaving all else - even the effects of gravity on the garments - unchanged. But there is another consequence of this posture which may account for its astonishing popularity among common Thais who flock to statues of the Reclining Buddha. Laid prone, the soles of the Buddhas feet are exposed and often decorated with diagrams encompassing the religious cosmos. Much folklore in Asia testifies to a belief in the fertility of feet: Indian women kick fruit trees and so cause them to flower; mothers step into the footprints of gods and give miraculous birth to the founders of Chinese dynasties; the Buddhas footprints in Thailand and elsewhere radiate charismatic powers of fertility, as did Sakyamuni upon his birth when taking seven steps to the north and lotus pedals sprung alive in each footprint.
Wood Eastern Serenitys carved wood products come from environmentally friendly tropical wood. Tropical Thai wood is the perfect material for all the wood products you will find here at Eastern Serenity. The wood used is fumigated and oven-dried to ensure pest removal and provide weather resistance. Each item is hand carved using traditional techniques passed down through generations of skilled artisans. Appropriately sized pieces of wood are used to minimize waste. The basic shape is carved using large chisels and block hammers, the sculpture becoming increasingly more defined as the finer details are then carved into the wood piece using detailing tools, fine sanding, and intricate brushwork. This attention to detail creates a piece that will add its unique presence to any environment.