Buddhist Era 2549 Esala Second Quarter - Thursday July 28, 2005
Buddhas of former times
By Kumudu Gunatilaka
In the thirteenth century Jehengis Khan destroyed the ancient city of Djoo-Ijool to the last stone. Old Bamian was a portion of this city. It is a small ruined town between Cabul and Balkh, 8,500 feet above sealevel, at the foot of Koh-J-baba, a huge mountain of Hindukush chain, in Central Asia. Until the advent of invaders into Chinese-Turkestan, Bactria, Afghanistan and Gandara, Central Asia, flourished with Buddhist monks, their ‘Viharas’, monasteries, and massive libraries.
The Bamian vally was hemmed by colossal rocks, with innumerable natural and man-made caves and grottos. The Buddhist Arhanths and monks found fine prehistoric statues, and many more now crumbled down to dust. Again, these caves and grottos became the abode of monks, who renovated them into temples during the first century. Three of the larger statues stand at the entrance to their temples. They dressed the ancient statues with plaster to represent the figure of the Fully-Awakened-One. They covered the interior walls of the niches with bright paintings of human figures, and the images of the Master.
Several erudite Jesuits including Burns visited the Bamian temples. They speak of a whole rock mountain honey-combed with gigantic caves with two immense statues of giants, cut in the rock. They referred to them as the last surviving witnesses of Miaotse, a giant race of a bygone age. Traditions about a race of giants in ancient myth are universal, and exist in oral and written lore of every civilization.
The priests of Egypt showed Herodotus, statues of human kings. These 345 enormous clossi in wood, each of which had its name. Those over thousand giant statues which are 12-15 feet tall, built of volcanic stone at Eastern Island too, represent the decedents of Miaotse race of giants. The largest statue is 32 feet tall. There are some unfinished ones, more than twice the size of the largest standing statue. Moses speak of Og, a king whose bedstead was 15 feet 4 inches long, and four feet wide.
Goliath as ten feet seven inches in height. All the numerous gigantic ruins with immense avenues of colossal structures, along and beyond rocky mountains were, the works of Cyclopes, the giants of old. Those archaeologists who see the fully-Awakened-One is the largest of the Bamian statues, are quite mistaken, to some extent. The largest of the Bamian statues is 173 feet high. It represents a male figure drapped in a kind of toga. The lines in the head, the drapery, the large hanging ears are indications of the image of the Master. The long ears symbolize the omniscience of wisdom, who knows and hears all, and whose benevolent love, and attention for all beings. The drapery, is contrast to the figure itself, is cut of the standing nock. It is made of plaster, and modelled on the original stone image. This drapery belongs to a far later epoch, than the image. The monks who turned the grottos of the giant race into temples, have done this. The second statue is 120, and the third 60 feet high. The remaining too, more smaller, and the last, only a little taller than the average tall man today. These Bamian statues to be assigned to a earlier period than the dispensation of Gauthama Buddha. The Esoteric tradition states that, the five statues represent the initials of the five races of men, of the present world cycle.
After the submission of the great continent Atlantic, people of the fourth race, sought refuge, in the fastness of the summit of central Asian mountain chain. these five statues are an imperishable record of the esoteric teaching, denoting the gradual evolution of the races. The largest statue represent the first race of men, prior to the formation of the grosser physical body. The ethereal formation of the person, being commemorated in hard everlasting granite, for the information of future mankind.
The second statue represents the second race of the ‘sweat born’. They were androgynous, not conscious of sexual impulses. the third statue represent the man that fell into the first physical race, with the division of sexes, and born of father and mother. The statues at Easter Island represent, the last descendants of this third race. When the continent Lemuria submerged in the Pacific ocean due to volcanic irruption, They were only from 20 to 25 feet tall.
The fourth race was still smaller, through gigantic in comparison with the present race. The race of giants culminated in the fifth race. The esoteric teaching further states that, these statues belong to other dispensations of Buddhas of former times. In his sermon ‘Buddharamsa’ the Master describes that the three former Buddhas of the present world cycle i.e Kukusanda, Konagama and Kashyapa were 60, 45 and 30 feet respectively, in height.
The Chinese traveller Hiories, Thsang visited Bamian temples in the seventh century AD. He described the five enormous statues in front of Vihara, as that of the Master. Further, he mentioned the shining gold ornaments that overlaid the statues that dazzled his eyes.These statues of a giant race, flourished one million years ago, For countless ages they have stood defying the cataclysms of nature, till this world heritage turned into debris by their ignorant decendants. - Kumudu Gunatilaka