Bust of a Bodhisattva Shakyamuni
- 3rd–4th century
- Pakistan (ancient region of Gandhara)
- H. 18 1/4 in. (46.4 cm); W. 13 in. (33 cm); D. 6 1/2 in. (16.5 cm)
- Credit Line:
- Samuel Eilenberg Collection, Ex Coll.: Columbia University, Purchase, Anonymous Gift and Rogers Fund, 1987
- Accession Number:
Representations of Shakyamuni prior to his enlightenment as a bodhisattva were popular in Gandhara, as they emphasize his high rebirth and potential to become a chakravartin king (universal monarch). It seems likely that such images were also intended to glorify Shakyamuni's great departure from the palace—the moment he leaves the illusory world of desire and attachment to seek enlightenment.