Wednesday April 25, 2018

Archaeologists from China claim, they have discovered a part of the Buddha’s Skull

The bone was uncovered back in 2008 and it was finally put on display in Hong Kong, in the year 2012

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Gautam Budhha. Image source: www.indiamarks.com
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  • The bone was uncovered back in 2008 and it was finally put on display sometime back in 2012 in Hong Kong
  • The skull bone was located inside a stupa model, a dome-shaped building erected as a Buddhist shrine
  • Deming apparently found the skull bone in a temple in China that was destroyed 1400 years ago

“Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth,” a quote by Buddha that proved true for archaeologists from the Nanjing Municipal Institute in China when they discovered the fragment of a skull bone, which belonged to Siddhartha Gautama. A find as enormous as the one above lacked any media coverage from the west, until now.

The bone was uncovered back in 2008 and it was finally put on display sometime back in 2012 in Hong Kong. The absence of western media on the scene till its publication in an English report is not what’s strange here; it’s instead the absence of anything more than some circumstantial evidence to prove that the bone actually belonged to Buddha.

Hidden away like a Nesting doll

The skull bone was located inside a stupa model, a dome-shaped building erected as a Buddhist shrine. It was hidden inside a casket of gold that was inside this model shrine, which was made of sandalwood, silver and gold, and was covered with gemstones made of crystal, glass, agate, and lapis lazuli. The casket of gold was decorated with different designs, said the Indiatimes report.

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The phoenix bird and some musical instruments were part of the intricate designs. On the other hand, the stupa had names of people, who constructed the model and the ones that donated to build it, inscribed on it. A man called Deming wrote these inscriptions. As described in the relics he was a “Master of Perfect Enlightenment, Abbot of Chengtian Monastery [and] the Holder of the Purple Robe.”

Remains of Budhha's skull. Image source: indiatimes.com
Remains of Buddha’s skull. Image source: indiatimes.com

Speculations and Doubts

“May the Heir Apparent and the imperial princes be blessed and prosperous with 10,000 offspring; may Civil and Military Ministers of the Court be loyal and patriotic; may the three armed forces and citizens enjoy a happy and peaceful time.”

The quote above comes from the inscription that was found in the parietal bone, a bone that forms the side and top of the cranium. Even though Deming clearly stated in the inscription that the bone belongs to Buddha, there is no concrete evidence to back that up. There is a lot of speculation about it and the experts believe that the circumstantial evidence is not enough.

History behind the exploration

Deming wrote that subsequently after Buddha “entered parinirvana”- the conclusive death that ends the cycle of life, death, and rebirth, King Ashoka ordered to preserve the Buddha, remains, mentioned the Indiatimes report. The body was divided into 84,000 parts, out of these 84,000 shares 19 were received by China.

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Deming apparently found the skull bone in a temple in China that was destroyed 1400 years ago. He wrote, “In this time of turbulence, did no one care for Buddhist affairs?”

-prepared by Karishma Vanjani, an intern at NewsGram.

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  • AJ Krish

    If the body was divided into 84,000 parts, and only 19 were received by China, where exactly are the remaining 83,981 pieces ?

  • Aparna Gupta

    If they have discovered the skull, it is really an interesting discovery but then the question is that where are the other parts?

  • AJ Krish

    If the body was divided into 84,000 parts, and only 19 were received by China, where exactly are the remaining 83,981 pieces ?

  • Aparna Gupta

    If they have discovered the skull, it is really an interesting discovery but then the question is that where are the other parts?

Next Story

China Firms Pledge To End Sexist Job Ads

'Men preferred': China tech firms pledge to end sexist job ads after damning report

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FILE - Visitors use their smartphones underneath the logo of Tencent at the Global Mobile Internet Conference in Beijing, May 6, 2014.
FILE - Visitors use their smartphones underneath the logo of Tencent at the Global Mobile Internet Conference in Beijing, May 6, 2014. VOA

Chinese tech firms pledged on Monday to tackle gender bias in recruitment after a rights group said they routinely favored male candidates, luring applicants with the promise of working with “beautiful girls” in job advertisements.

A Human Rights Watch (HRW) report found that major technology companies including Alibaba, Baidu and Tencent had widely used “gender discriminatory job advertisements,” which said men were preferred or specifically barred women applicants.

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Some ads promised candidates they would work with “beautiful girls” and “goddesses,” HRW said in a report based on an analysis of 36,000 job posts between 2013 and 2018.

Tencent, which runs China’s most popular messenger app WeChat, apologized for the ads after the HRW report was published on Monday.

“We are sorry they occurred and we will take swift action to ensure they do not happen again,” a Tencent spokesman told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

FILE - The Alibaba logo is displayed at the New York Stock Exchange, in New York.
FILE – The Alibaba logo is displayed at the New York Stock Exchange, in New York. VOA

E-commerce giant Alibaba, founded by billionaire Jack Ma, vowed to conduct stricter reviews to ensure its job ads followed workplace equality principles, but refused to say whether the ads singled out in the report were still being used.

“Our track record of not just hiring but promoting women in leadership positions speaks for itself,” said a spokeswoman.

Baidu, the Chinese equivalent of search engine Google, meanwhile said the postings were “isolated instances.”

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HRW urged Chinese authorities to take action to end discriminatory hiring practices.

Its report also found nearly one in five ads for Chinese government jobs this year were “men only” or “men preferred.”

“Sexist job ads pander to the antiquated stereotypes that persist within Chinese companies,” HRW China director Sophie Richardson said in a statement.

“These companies pride themselves on being forces of modernity and progress, yet they fall back on such recruitment strategies, which shows how deeply entrenched discrimination against women remains in China,” she added.

China was ranked 100 out of 144 countries in the World Economic Forum’s 2017 Gender Gap Report, after it said the country’s progress towards gender parity has slowed.  VOA