Last Saturday afternoon, Thirananda, Samata, Yi Rong, Min Than and his mum, Padma, Viraj and I went to the Peranakan Museum to see 35 of these exquisite sculptures which are on display there. The exhibition is appropriately called Serenity In Stone and is really worth seeing. The Buddhas and bodhisattvas left me feeling quite peaceful and that night I had a particularly good meditation.
Singapore used to be a bit of a cultural wilderness, but not any more. Every few months one or another of the city's museums puts on a world-class exhibition, this one, for me at least, being the best so far. Of course there are still a few creases to iron out. I couldn’t help notice several clangers in the Gallery Guide to the exhibition. Shakyamuni is not 'one of the names of the historical Buddha, another is Siddharta Gautama.' It is of course a title meaning 'the Sakyan sage.' Saying that the Gupta period went up to the 7th century is stretching it a bit and Buddhist sculpture flourished in Mathura under the Kushan rather that the Guptas. But they're new at it so we'll be indulgent.
The exhibition is at the Peranakan Museum, 39 Armenian St and continues until it the 26th of April. They're even allowing people to meditate in the gallery every Wednesday evenings between 7.30 and 8.30 pm. What a creative idea!