Photo Source: Bamboo Temple


Bamboo Temple, Kunming, China

In Buddhist folklore, Luohans (also called Arhats) are original disciples of the Buddha who achieved individual salvation and immortality. They are said to remain on earth, in order to guard the Buddhist law, until Maitreya (the future Buddha) appears. The sculptor has rendered this set of 500 Luohans with a charming mixture of eccentricity, exaggeration, and realism; he is said to have modeled many of his figures on real people that he knew, and was therefore criticized for parodying his contemporaries.