dao walking

walking Chinese for "walking"

Buddha in grandeur

Chinese characters for "Embroidered image of Sakyamuni Buddha on mounted scroll "

Trail beside stream,
Fragrant pine.
Rocky red earth,
Steep mountain.

Walking may be a good metaphor for spiritual life, but there are times when simply hiking is literally the best activity. When one walks in the woods or climbs mountains, there is a wonderful unity of body, mind, and spirit. Hiking strengthens the legs, increases stamina, invigorates the blood, and soothes the mind. Away from the madness of society, one is freed to observe nature’s lessons.

Erosion. Gnarled roots. The carcass of a dead animal. A flight of swallows. The high spirals of hawks. Bladed reflections of rushing water. Just-budding bare branches. Gray rock, cracked, shattered, and worn. A fallen tree. A lone cloud. The laughter of plum branches. Even a little circle of rocks beside the trail—who put them there, or did any hand arrange them, and no matter which, what are the secrets of that circle?

There are a thousand meanings in every view, if only we open ourselves to see the scripture of the landscape.

365 Tao
daily meditations
Deng Ming-Dao (author)
ISBN 0-06-250223-9

Chinese characters for "Embroidered image of Sakyamuni Buddha on mounted scroll "

Embroidered image of Sakyamuni Buddha on mounted scroll
Ivory, silk, metal hardware, wood, ink
Length: 335.5 cm.
Height: 133 ½”; Width: 52 ½”; Depth: 1 13/16”

Splendors of China’s Forbidden City: The Glorious Reign of Emperor Qianlong
Splendors of China’s Forbidden City is devoted to the long reign of Emperor Qianlong (1736-1795). The exhibition concentrates on Qianlong’s 18th-century period, the last grand era of the Chinese empire. During his long reign, Emperor Qianlong became the epitome of a great Chinese ruler, at once all-powerful and civilized. The Chinese empire reached its largest geographic spread under his rule, while life in China was both peaceful and prosperous. The exhibition investigates how Qianlong achieved this magnificent level. Politically adept, he recognized and supported all facets of Chinese civilization. Although he was a Manchu and remained proud of his nomad forebears, he cultivated the Han Chinese, who formed the majority of the Chinese people. Like his predecessors, the Kangxi and Yongzheng emperors, Qianlong carried out a balancing act between his Manchu heritage and the culture of Han China, which the Manchu Qing dynasty had conquered.

(continued from the Curator’s essay:
the exhibit and the art we will see here:)

The Dallas Museum of Art has chosen to display this exhibition as a series of fine art works.Although the layout generally follows the
themes of the exhibition as planned by the Palace Museum and the Field Museum, the flow of works in the sections has been slightly changed to highlight significant works for individual contemplation and appreciation. The rooms devoted to the exhibition are large and space is given to major works, and a palette of light, bright colors is used in the exhibition rooms, to echo the light, color and grandeur of the Forbidden City. (note: we have limited access to the exhibit — online resources only)

This theme of symbols of imperial power continues with a recreation
of the imperial throne room from which Qianlong reigned. Large and awe-inspiring, the center of the room is the emperor’s red and gold throne. Adjacent to this are two portraits, attributed to Italian painter Guiseppe Castiglione, of the emperor and his first empress Xiaoxian.
The Jesuit court-artist produced these formal court images of the emperor and empress sitting on thrones, clothed in gorgeous robes. During the Qing period, dragon robes had strong hierarchic symbolism, with the emperor’s robes at the top of the ranking system. The dragon on the front of his robe indicates that the ruler is the center of the universe. Here is Qianlong in full, solemn glory. Qianlong remained devoted to his wife Xiaoxian, even after her untimely death; the way he valued her can be seen in the unusual way the empress raises her hand in a gesture of power, rather than folding it, and in the fact that she sits on a dragon throne, rather than the female phoenix throne. (continued tomorrow)

T A O t e C H I N G

hand drawn calligraphy of the word dao
e l e v e n
tao verse eleven

Thirty spokes meet at a nave;
Because of the hole we may use the wheel.
Clay is moulded into a vessel;
Because of the hollow we may use the cup.
Walls are built around a hearth;
Because of the doors we may use the house.

Thus tools come from what exists,
But use from what does not.

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