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Chinese Buddha Statues

Historians believe that Buddhism first spread to China as early as the first century A.D. via missionaries from India. The Buddhist philosophy, which promoted morality and inner reflection, was eventually adopted into Chinese culture. Since then, many variations of Buddha or bodhisattvas have been carved out of stone or cast out of bronze.

Buddhism underwent various changes throughout history, resulting in greatly varying forms of representation. Some Buddhas are depicted with round plump stomachs and others are more slender with either heavy or thin garments. The slender forms with thin garments were derived from Indian tradition, while the others are more frequently Chinese deviances.

Each variation of the Buddhas have different significances. The plumper Buddha statues, known as "Laughing Buddhas," represent contentment and having plenty; they are well fed and happy. Rubbing this type of Buddha’s large stomach brings wealth, good luck, and prosperity. The thinner Buddhas, wearing sparse clothing due to humble living, more closely represent the Buddhist representations brought from India.


Quick Facts

  • A reclining Buddha is a portrayal of Buddha just prior to entering Nirvana
  • Elongated earlobes are symbols of an enlightened state. This is a remnant from an ancient Indian tradition of wearing large cylinders in the earlobes
  • The Laughing Buddha is based off of a Zen monk with a jolly nature. This Buddha is named Hotai, and is depicted as instilling happiness within all those he visits

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Sellers Who Sell Chinese Buddha Statues


Empire Auction House

Empire Auction House

Mega International Auction Inc.

Mega International Auction Inc.