It is the oldest surviving Buddhist school. It has been the major religion in Sri Lanka as well as continental Southeast Asia for many centuries. Theravada promotes the concept of “Teaching of Analysis”. This doctrine states that insight comes from the aspirant's experience, critical investigation and reasoning instead of blind faith.
East Asian Buddhism:
It is the collective term for all the Buddhism schools that developed in the East Asian region. Most of these schools are part of the Mahayana transmission. Tibetan Buddhism: It is the body of religious Buddhist doctrine and institutions that are characteristic of Tibet. This branch of Buddhism includes the teachings of the three vehicles or yanas of Buddhism. In India, Buddhism had become almost extinct. Presently it is being revived again. Buddhism has many followers around the world and is considered as one of the major religions in the world. The number of Buddhist followers is estimated to be around 230 to 500 million worldwide. The monks' order which began, during Buddha's lifetime in India, is among the world's oldest organizations. Wooden Buddhist statues are representations of major symbols or icons of Buddhism .Wooden Buddhist “Dharmachakra”: The followers of Buddhism live their lives in accordance with the Eightfold Path dictated by Buddha. The Eightfold Path is the way to end the suffering of people. It is the fourth part of the Four Noble Truths. The Eightfold Path is divided into three sections: Sila, Samadhi and Prajna. The Eightfold Path is represented by a wheel with eight spokes. The spokes of the wheel represent the eight ways of life dictated by Buddha.
Wooden Buddhist Symbols:
Buddhist symbols began to be used around 3rd century BC. It started with aniconic symbolism and avoided direct representations of Buddha. Anthropomorphic symbols were introduced much later, around 1st century A.D. The emergence of Tibetan Buddhism introduced innovative symbols. Among the most prominent symbols of Buddhism are the
The stupa is a mound like structure characteristic of Buddhist monuments. In many countries stupas are known as chedi. The stupas are important to Buddhists as they contain relics of Gautama Buddha. A stupa has five constituents; a square base, a hemispherical dome, a conical spire, a crescent moon and a circular disc. Wooden replicas of famous stupas are sold at Buddhist tourist spots. Many shops also sell wooden statues of stupas.
The Dharma wheel or Dharma Chakra is and auspicious Buddhist symbol. It represents Buddha's teachings of the way towards enlightenment. It is sometimes also known as the wheel of doctrine or the wheel of law. The wooden representations of this “chakra” can be found in many Buddhist homes and also in monasteries.
The Lotus Flower:
The lotus is symbolical of the purity of mind. It also represents spiritual power. The lotus flower is rooted in mud but blossoms above water.
The flower itself is untouched by the dirty mud. The lotus is a reflection of spiritual perfection and authority.
The swastika is a general symbol of Buddhism. It can be either left or right facing. The swastika is also a symbol of good luck. The arms of the swastika are equilateral crosses with the arms bent at right angles. Since the right facing swastika is generally associated with the Nazis, the Buddhist swastikas are all left facing. The swastika is also a symbol of good luck. Wooden swastikas are often hung above doorways or used as signs to denote temples or monasteries.