Acala Vidyaaraaja

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Acala Vidyârâja, Fudo Myo-O 不動明王

The Indian Connecion

Interpreting art is a tricky, uncertain endeavor, particularly when the gods are involved. Take, for example, Fudo Myo-o, an esoteric Japanese Buddhist deity whose likenesses date back to the twelfth century. He was sometimes confused with Ususama, another Buddhist deity who was regarded as a devourer of stinking matter.

As a result, statues of poor Fudo Myo-o were occasionally placed near bathrooms in Buddhist temples. What is pleasing to one deity is perhaps not so enjoyable to another.

For millennia, religious statues, paintings, and diagrams have been created not only as objects to be admired, but also as tools for maintaining relations with ancestors, gods, and the dead transform- ing the human body and soul; and foreseeing and changing the future. But in spite of the original intentions behind them, they are―as in the case of Fudo Myo-o― subject to reinterpretations over time.

Even relatively current works can leave us scratching our heads, wondering what their creators intended. The 1918 plumbing contraption titled God, attributed to Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven and Morton Schamberg, is intended to be a statement on technology, but leaves us to wonder what sort of statement the artists intended to make about a Supreme Being. We know from records that Freytag-Loringhoven wrote to Solomon Guggenheim that "God should take lessons on production efficiency from Henry Ford." Still, the meaning of "God" in any work of art lies within its beholders.

Read the full text HERE
The Divine is in the Details
by Ami Albernaz with Drew Bourne


Acala (Skr.: Acala, Achala अचल; "immovable" one)
. Fudo Myo-O Introduction .



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