Buddhism in Iran: An Anthropological Approach to Traces and by Mostafa Vaziri (auth.)

By Mostafa Vaziri (auth.)

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Extra resources for Buddhism in Iran: An Anthropological Approach to Traces and Influences

Example text

72 Besides cross-influences manifesting during the Kushan period, Sasanid influences on Buddhist art can also be found. 79 Despite the lack of evidence of a Shaivism in Mesopotamia, the Gandhāran art of the Kushāns had found its way to the westernmost territories of the Sasanid Empire. In their interactions on an intellectual level, ironically, given their exclusive Zoroastrian cultural policy, the Sasanids showed a great interest in Indian sciences and literature, which included Buddhism. E. 80 India became known as the land where the fables were told with the language of talking animals.

In this state of understanding, an enlightened person would acknowledge and yet remain unaffected by all things that are by nature impermanent. Even clinging to joy and freedom was seen by the Buddha as something negative, since it would automatically produce its opposite and thus give rise to unhappiness. 26 All is therefore in the state of flux and nothing is permanent, and this is the basis of the nonself philosophy. Regarding the attachment to the body, the Buddha could not reverse the natural processes of physical distress that have always tormented human beings, beginning with birth and continuing through illness, aging, decay, and death.

Some of the areas where such intermingling can be noticed through fragmentary evidence are in the fields of art, iconography, architecture, religious and eschatological beliefs, mysticism, and literature. ). Interaction between the Iranian world and Buddhism involved direct contact in Khurāsān (which includes part of northern Afghanistan, northeastern Iran, and parts of Central Asia—often in scholarship Khurāsān, which partly lies in northern Afghanistan, is considered as part of the eastern Iranian world in the medieval times).

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