Art And Religion Essay

973 words - 4 pages

Art and Religion

Art is many times involved with religious practices and ceremonies. Much art which is related to a type of religion uses symbolic images which pertain to the belief. A great deal of this art is used primarily as decoration. It is also used to exalt that which is being praised, and it is attempted to move the viewer or believer in some way. Art can be used to tell a story of history or simply to imply the power of what is being praised. There seem to be few religious practices which actually incorporate the art itself with the ceremony or ritual that is taking place. However, this does not mean that there exist no forms of practice which do incorporate art into the ritual. One way in which art is used as an integral part of the actual religious practice is through the Tibetan Buddhist rituals involved with meditation. The art which is used as a part of this practice is called the mandala.

A mandala is a painted fabric of some sort which contains specifically arranged images. These images are representative of gods or goddesses, and many times symbolize the Buddhist conception of the universe. There seem to be a few different definitions of what a mandala is. Translated from Sanskrit a mandala means "to possess the essence." It is also said to mean "circle," and is also called a mystical diagram, or a magic circle. The mandala is an essential part of certain tantric rituals and is a means of meditation. The sadhakas, or Buddhist monks, which practice this technique of meditation use rice powder, cinnabar, sesamum seeds, or colored sand to trace the design on the mandala, which is positioned on a table of some sort to allow it to be on a horizontal plane. The intricate process of tracing the drawings with rice serves as an aid to the action of ritual visualization, unique to but an intricate part of the tantric meditation of Tibetan Buddhist practice.

In tantric Buddhism, ritual action is an important means of meditation. Many rituals, in their own abstraction, involve the gratification of the senses. In this sect, religious art as well as music are significant in aiding enlightenment. The mandala is an example of art which is used in conjunction with these rituals. The mandala is a cosmogram. Within this cosmogram, there are two separate entities to be found. These come from the different interpretation style one may put into it. If the mandala is observed as a map of the microcosm, of man himself, the deities involved in the images are perceived symbolically. One example of symbolism in this case is personifying emotions. If the interpretation made is macrocosmically, then the deities are conceived in a mythological way. Through the practice of meditation these deities are visualized and identified. In order to achieve the ultimate goal of escaping the round of birth...

Find Another Essay On Art and Religion

The three central protagonists in Enduring Love could be said to represent science, art and religion. In the light of this statement, how far does this count for the conflict between the characters?

1762 words - 7 pages (Enduring Love by Ian Mc Ewan) Love that endures is a main theme in the novel, and the strongest force in existence which has the capability of bridging those whose outlooks are diametrically opposite, for example, art, science and religion (Clarissa, Parry and Jed). However, this only bridges them, it does not resolve any differences they may have in terms of perspective. I do not think it possible to answer the above question without touching

Catal Huyuk - Information on Economic Patterns, Geographic Influences, Art and Architecture, Religion and Values, and Social and Political Organization

1075 words - 4 pages containing statues, which give us a vivid picture of Neolithic man's concern with religion and beliefs. Of the discovered paintings, most display religious concerns. In all the homes the religious paintings and statues have the heads of animals with horns. Some houses have peculiar differences to them; for example, small areas found are considered to be areas of worship. According to current thinking, when an important member of a house died, the

Pre-Columbian Art: The role of art in the Aztec Religion

978 words - 4 pages punishment, agriculture, and all aspects of the civilization's economy.The Aztec religion included human sacrifices in rich ceremonies to the gods. Dress was also important in all parts of Aztec life. The Aztecs worshiped hundreds of gods and goddesses; each represented a different aspect of life. Designing clothes, mainly in the upper class, was one form of art in the Aztec culture. Women usually made the clothing, and they richly decorated them with


958 words - 4 pages religion anywhere and confess their sins to themselves or friends. Hegel thinks that this is OK though because this is just Christianity developing and he believes in progression. Hegel sees nothing wrong with using art for reasons other then religion, he thinks it is good for people to use art to explore things people do or support. Hegel has the belief that spiritual life equals inner life. Hegel's God is a God of philosophy, this God creates

Understanding the misunderstood, art From Different Cultures

657 words - 3 pages appreciation and enjoyment erases the barriers and the limits, and allows cross-cultural understanding and appraisal.Art has always relied heavily upon universal symbols. One of the most well known universal symbols is the cross, meaning of course, religion. Religion of a culture is one of the most frequently misjudged and stereotyped aspects From the prehistoric times of the cave man to present day, art has depicted religious scenes native to a

The Value of Art

2453 words - 10 pages through a biography, a short bio next to the work of art, or by personally speaking to the artist. Knowledge about the artist's cultural, spiritual, and biological background will shape the viewer's perception of both the artist and their creation. For example, an African artist would paint very differently than a European artist. The artist paints from what he or she knows, an African might place a lot of references to a tribal religion in his

The Importance of Art

667 words - 3 pages that there were was a source of communication through art and a part of life. Biblical paintings recorded the life and death of Jesus Christ. Religiously symbolic art has expressed the important role played by religion. Chinese art has various color combination which can be seen on chinaware, scrolls, pictures, calendars and even woman kimonos reflect high artistic talents and shows the appreciation of life. Ancient Egyptians, Aztecs, Incas and

Renaissance Art Categories

711 words - 3 pages , with a variety of rivalries occurring amongst Christian leaders, regarding the arts to be depicted in religious architecture. According to Stokstad and Cothren, the rivalries amongst religious leaders over the arts also contributed o the definition of the art trends and pieces themselves. The rivalries that were experienced include contending popes, Florence and aggressive neighbors, humanitarians and devout religion followers and entertainers

Why Art Serves Many Functions

615 words - 2 pages To say that art serves no function is absurd. Art is a function of everyday life. First of all, art holds a function to its creator. Art can be expressed through clothing, home décor, expression, housing, food, jewelry, and religion just to name a few. Architects, clothing designers, even landscapers rely on art to supply their income. Other artists like painters, photographers, and chefs earn a living through their expression of art. Why

Fra Angelico’s Coronation of the Virgin: Art Use during the Renaissance:

1819 words - 7 pages , thus shaping the world around them in a manner that would please them. Society and art have always gone hand in hand, and thus as society changed, so did the way art was seen and interpreted. As society changes overtime, art has and will continue to adapt to whatever circumstances arise. No matter how drastically the symbols of religion, or the representative imagery of the physical world changes, art will constantly be reinterpreted to instill

Art Values

621 words - 2 pages way abstract or unrealistic. For example the painting of the HUGE baby (Christ) and his mother with the rather long neck. So, this was a period of high religion, low realism, but still a period of art that expressed its values. The final period of art that I will discuss is the Renaissance. This was a period of extremely high intelligence and a return to the classical ideals, Renaissance means rebirth. The artisans of this time period were well

Similar Essays

Amenhotep Iv And Art And Religion

2337 words - 9 pages Amenhotep IV and Art and Religion The influence Amenhotep IV had on art and religion of his time caused him to be one of the most controversial Egyptian pharaohs of all time. The 10th king of the 18th dynasty, he has been called the most remarkable king to sit on Egypt’s throne. He has also earned the honor of being called "the first individual in human history."1 The cult of Aten did develop before his rule, perhaps as early as 1411 B.C

Russian Culture: A Look At Its Religion And Art

1216 words - 5 pages Encarta)Religion as one can clearly see had a direct impact on the Russian people but it also had a direct influence on Russian art. Since art is a reflection of every culture, it is important that one studies it when one is studying another culture.The introduction of Christianity into Russia spurred the development of the country's fine arts. For 600 years, Christian forms of art dominated Russian painting, music, architecture, and literature

"Akhenaten's Impact On Religion, Art And Building Was Significant, But Temporary"

1844 words - 7 pages "Akhenaten's impact on religion, art and building was significant, but temporary"It cannot be denied that Amenhotep IV, or Akhenaten as he is more widely known, had a very large and significant impact on Egyptian religion and art during his reign as pharaoh. The effects and impacts of his reign spread across many aspects of Egyptian life and ranged from the art of Akhenaten and to religion and the Cult of Aten to building at this

Machu Picchu Information On Economic Patterns, Geographic Influences, Art And Architecture, Religion And Values, And Social And Political Organization

883 words - 4 pages the June and December solstices.Religion was controlled by a hierarchy similar to the government hierarchy, emphasized ritual and organization. Heading the Inca gods was Viracocha. His servants were the sun, the god of the weather or thunder, the moon, the stars, the earth, and the sea. The sun god was foremost among these. Divination, sacrifices, celebrations and ceremonies, ritual, feasts, and fasts were all part of Inca religion. Sacrifice, both