Since the dawn of time, humans have felt the need to create images or effigies in the material world. The most ancient surviving examples are around 13,000 years old and were quite recently unearthed at Gobekli Tepe, thought to be the first monumental building, in south-eastern Turkey.
It is useful to think about why we do this. Before we could read or write, before the emergence of technology or pottery, our ancestors were moved to create something on the material plane using materials of the Earth to focus their attention on. Protection from the unknown? Celebration of the invisible? Markers to send messages into the sky?
We can make a beautiful image or effigy as an outward signal, or as a representation of something inside. We can create an image for ourselves or for others. Our motivation to do this may come from a profound sense of gratitude or awe, or to communicate with something invisible, or perhaps to convey some message or display as a badge to our communities. It may separate or unite us with its audience.
But there are some image makers who sculpt uttering a prayer or mantra for each strike of their chisel or each rub of their file. Their motivation is to release the true nature of all beings so that the planet will become a land of permanence, of bliss, of true self and purity.
These sculptors etch the divinity of each being into the hearts of all spectators with a wish to transport them into an eternity of purity and true happiness so that universal balance will be restored or maintained.
Look out upon beautiful images with your physical eyes, then look inside upon your own unique permanent beauty.
Images courtesy of megapixyl.com (all licenses at firstname.lastname@example.org) and Mariko Kinoshita