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Sutra Scroll Container with Cover

Japanese

Artwork Details

Sutra Scroll Container with Cover
late 12th century
Japanese
stoneware with gray (?) glaze
11 1/4 in. x 5 3/4 in. x 5 3/4 in. ( 28.58 cm x 14.61 cm x 14.61 cm )
Museum purchase made possible by the Margaret Watson Parker Art Collection Fund
1983/2.248A&B

On Display

Not currently on display

Description

Sutra scroll container with cover
Japan, Heian period (794–1185)
Late 12th century
Stoneware with glaze
Museum purchase made possible by the
Margaret Watson Parker Art Collection Fund,
1983/2.248A and B

In Japan, the year 1052 was believed to be the beginning of mappō,
the decline of the Age of Dharma (the Buddhist teachings).
Japanese Buddhist practitioners thought that after this point, no
one could attain enlightenment and that morality would crumble
over the next 10,000 years. In this period, the practice of burying
sutras to preserve Buddhist teachings for the future increased.
This practice also allowed the patron to build merit in the hope
of a better rebirth. This relatively simple sutra container would
have been buried on temple grounds or at a sacred site. Mountains
were a common choice for such burials as they were believed to be
closer to Buddhist paradises, or Pure Lands of Buddhas.

Summer 2023 Gallery Rotation 
__________

Sutra scroll container with cover
Japan
Heian period (794–1185)
Late 12th century
Stoneware with glaze
Museum purchase made possible by the
Margaret Watson Parker Art Collection Fund,
1983/2.248A&B
In Japan, the year 1052 was believed to be the beginning of mappō,
the decline of the Age of Dharma (the Buddhist teachings). Japanese
Buddhist practitioners believed that after this point no one could attain
enlightenment and that morality would crumble over the next 10,000
years. In this period, the practice of burying sutras to preserve Buddhist
teachings for the future increased. This practice also allowed the patron
to build merit in the hope of a better rebirth. This relatively simple sutra
container would have been buried on temple grounds or at a sacred site.
Mountains were a common choice for such burials as they were believed
to be closer to Buddhist paradises, or Pure Lands of Buddhas.

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