Essay: Buddhist Symbols

Sample Essay

In relations to the religious characteristics symbols are peculiar to certain religion, Buddhism is no exception. Therefore many of the Buddhist symbols are aligned to the cultural perspective of the religion origin. The temple had many significant Buddhist symbols. The first important symbol placed on the front of the shrine room is the dharmachakra’ or eight-spoked dharma wheel which symbolizes the Buddha’s turning the wheel of truth or law. The second symbol is the throne is both a reference to Siddharta Gautama’s royal ancestry and to the idea of spiritual kingship – enlightenment as ruler of the spiritual world.

The lion is associated with regality, strength and power. It is therefore an appropriate symbol for the Buddha who in tradition era was a royal prince. There is also the begging-bowl that gives reference to the story shortly before the Buddha reached enlightenment; when a young woman named Sujata offered him a bowl of milk-rice. The Seven Jewels of Royal Power is placed sideways of the temple shrine that symbolizes secular power as they are believed to give the ruler knowledge, resources and power.

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