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Takht-i-Bahi تخت بھائی

Takht Bai, Takht-i-Bhāi, Takhtbai, Takht Bhai or Takh Bay

Shams-i-bala and The Historical Shambhala Kingdom: The Takht Bahi Monastery & Early Tantric Buddhism (520 AD)

The Buddhist Ruins of Takht-i-Bahi and Neighbouring City Remains at Sahr-i-Bahlol are one of the most imposing relics of Buddhism in the Gandhara region of Pakistan. The inscribed property is composed of two distinct components both dating from the same era.

The Buddhist Ruins of Takhi-i-Bahi (Throne of Origins) are a monastic complex, founded in the early 1st century A.D., is spectacularly positioned on various hilltops ranging from 36.6 metres to 152.4 metres in height, typical for Buddhist sites. The complexes cover an area of around 33ha.

The Buddhist monastery was in continual use until the 7th century AD. It is composed of an assemblage of buildings and is the most complete Buddhist monastery in Pakistan. The buildings were constructed of stone in Gandhara patterns (diaper style) using local dressed and semi-dressed stone blocks set in a lime and mud mortar.

Today the ruins comprise a main stupa court, votive stupas court, a group of three stupas, the monastic quadrangle with meditation cells, conference hall, covered stepped passageways and other secular buildings.

Buddhist Ruins of Takht-i-Bahi and Neighbouring City Remains at Sahr-i-Bahlol - UNESCO World Heritage Centre



Takht-i-Bhai: A Buddhist monastery in Mardan | Asian Tribune

Few of the recent discoveries in India promise to be more fruitful of important results afor the elucidation of the archaeology of India than those obtained from the recent excavation of ruined monasteries in the neighbourhood of Peshawur. A great deal still remains to be done before we can speak with certainty with regard either to their age or origin, but enough is known of them to make it certain that the materials there exist for settling not only the question of
the amount of influence classical art exercised on that of India, but also for solving many problems of Buddhist archaeology and art.

Monasteries at Jamalgiri, Takht·i-Bahi, and Shah Dehri.
History of Indian and Eastern Architecture by James Fergusson, 1891, pg 169

Standing Buddha
The Buddha
Registration number 1889,1109.1,
Found/Acquired: Takht-i-Bahi

Standing Buddha, originally in 'abhaya-mudra'. A thick neckline shows the backthrow, and the dense drapery folds run in finely rounded thin ridges, in prominent relief between the legs. A hint of the antaravāsaka girdle shows between the two schemes.

The head, which looks down, is elegantly oval, with hair undulating from a peak into the uṣṇīṣa, which is a little tilted forward and has a small and circular central hole in the top. The eyebrows are a distinct edge, curving gently with a large ūrṇā between, and the long narrow eyes have heavy and prominent lids. The nose is broken and the lips are thin, pursed and shaped above a jutting chin. The concave ears are long and close to the head.

The left knee is flexed, the abdomen is lightly rounded and the halo is plain.

British Museum - The Buddha

Buddhist Ruins of Takht-i-Bahi (c. 1c. BC), Pakistan: Architecture, Far East | The Red List

plan of monastery 1899
Plan of Monastery at Takht-i-Bahi
History of Indian and Eastern Architecture by James Fergusson, 1899

plan of monastery
Section II: Summary of Periodic Report on the State of Conservation of the Buddhist Ruins of Takht-i-Bahi and Neighbouring City Remains at Sahr-i-Bahlol, Pakistan, 2003

Takht-i-Bahi (lat.34 degrees 17 minutes N x Long. 71 degrees 57 minutes E) is located about eight miles north-west of Mardan (District Peshawar, Pakistan)on the top of the spur of a hill with a broad view of the valley below. An inscription dates the site to the first half of the first century CE, but the earliest portion were likely a century earlier. Xuan Zang (7th century) describes the main stupa as the biggest and most spectacular he had ever seen. The large monastery built by King Kanishka west of the stupa was already in ruins by the time of Xuan Zang. An inscription on the site notes the visit of Viradeva, who likely came for study from Nagarahara (Jalalabad) at the time of the third Palava king.

A long flight of steps descends from the stupa area to the monastery. The cells surround a central court on three sides and the fourth side semms to have housed kitchens and storerooms. This source does not give the number of cells. Pg. 119-120

Input by: Stewart Gordon 05 Apr 2015

Google Map link

Takht-i-Bhai monastery, (towards) Mardam, NWF Province, PK - Mapping Buddhist Monasteries

Foot print of the Buddha
Foot print of the Buddha, from Takht-i-Bahi Gandhara, today in west Pakistan. Grey scist. 74 x34 cm
Frederick Noronha | Flickr

Shad Tchup Ling

Shad Tchup Ling

In Russia's Ural Mountains, a small group of Buddhists led by a veteran of the U.S.S.R.'s Afghanistan war has spent the past 21 years establishing a monastery on an isolated mountaintop. But it sits on land claimed by a company belonging to one of Russia's most powerful oligarchs. After years of delays, a date has now been set for the complex's removal.

The Buddhists Vs. The Billionaire

Did you know that the Ural region has a Buddhist Center, the only one in Russia outside the Republics of Buryatia and Kalmykia? Shad Tchup Ling Buddhist monastery is located on Kachkanar Mount. The latter is a worthy place of attraction itself. Being the highest mountain in the Middle Urals (887.6m) with stunning views and peculiar rocks at the top

Kachkanar Mt. How to become a Buddhist in the Urals? |

Shad Tchup Ling


Mikhail Sannikov created it. He was born to a military family and commanded a reconnaissance group himself in Afghanistan. He left the army after being wounded and started working as a janitor in a morgue, a cook in a river fleet, and finished art school externally. At the end of the 1980s, at 27 years-old, Mikhail decided to enter the Ivolginsky Datsan (the Buddhist monastery and university for Buryats in Russia). He entered the monastery and took the religious name Tenzin Dokchit. He also studied Buddhism in Mongolia, after which young Lama Dokchit was given the order to build a Buddhist datsan in the Urals.

The monastery was named Shad Tchup Ling, which means “the place of practice and realization” (or the “Place of study and implementation). Construction started on May 15, 1995 and was built by Tenzin Dokchit by himself for the first years. The first buildings were practically entirely made of wood. A fire that occurred in 1998 destroyed everything that had been constructed. The lama and small group of students had to start everything over again.

Buddhist monks far off in the Russian mountains | Russia Beyond The Headlines

Shad Tchup Ling winter
Lone buddhist Shad Tchup Ling temple in Russia — Steemit

360 degree view
360 degree view: Kachkanar. Buddhist monastery Shad Tchup Ling.(3)

Tenzin Dokchit

Official requests to remove the monastery have been ignored by Sannikov, as have two fines issued by the local authorities. Public opinion is split on whether the monastery should be allowed to remain on the mountaintop. A petition to save the monastery drew thousands of signatures and was publicly backed by Russian music icon Boris Grebenshchikov. Some locals of Kachkanar, however, say the monastery is standing in the way of the future of the town itself. Lyudmila Lapteva, the editor in chief of Kachkanar's Chetverg newspaper, told RFE/RL, "This town was built expressly to mine those minerals. If Evraz can't keep mining here, then this town is going to cease to exist."

The Buddhists Vs. The Billionaire

The Buddhist community "Shad TChUP Ling" | VK

Daruma Facing a Cave Wall while Meditating

Daruma Facing a Cave Wall while Meditating
Alternate Title: 面壁達磨
Tōrei Enji (Japan, 1721-1792)
18th century
Paintings; scrolls
Hanging scroll; ink on paper
Image: 14 1/2 × 19 1/2 in. (36.83 × 49.53 cm); Mount: 44 × 24 1/4 in. (111.76 × 61.6 cm)
Gift of Leslie Prince Salzman (M.2006.207)
Japanese Art

Daruma Facing a Cave Wall while Meditating | LACMA Collections

作家名: 中原南天棒(鄧州全忠)
Artist : Nakahara Nantenbō (Tōjū Zenchū)
作品: 面壁達磨画賛
Title : Wall Gazing Daruma

時代: 大正10年(1921)
材: 絹本墨画
本紙寸法: 128×40.2センチ
総丈: 197×54.2センチ

面壁達磨画賛 | 古美術 景和(けいわ)

Double-Headed Buddha

Double-Headed Buddha

Title: Double-Headed Buddha
Place: China, Tangut State of Xi-Xia, Khara-Khoto
Date: 13th-14th century
Archaeological site: Suburgan, Khara-Khoto
Material: clay, with mineral paints and gilding
Dimensions: h. 62 cm
Acquisition date: Entered the Hermitage in 1933; transferred from the State Russian Museum
Inventory Number: ХХ-2296

The State Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg, Russia

This story was told to a Chinese pilgrim during one of his long wanderings in the north:once upon a time, there were two men, both devoted to the teachings of Buddha. Each of them dreamed an image of the Buddha, but they were too poor to pay for two sculptures, so they asked an artist to make them only one. Buddha himself, in an act of kindness, divided the image in two. Kindness, or compassion, is an important teaching of Buddhism.

This clay statue was found in the stupa uncovered by Kozlov in 1909.

Akshardhool Stories: Black Castle of the desert

Two Headed Buddha.
Khara Khoto. Period of the Mongol invasion (1227 – late 14th century).
Clay, straw; traces of paint and gilding

2013.4 Culture and Art of Central Asia

Mara's Soldiers of Pegu

Mara's Demons

Mara's Demons; Shwegugyi Temple, Pegu; Ca. 1479; Glazed earthenware; H. 181/2 x W. 13 x D. 4 in. (47 x 33 x 10.2 cm). National Museum, Nay Pyi Taw. (Sean Dungan)

Buddhist Art of Myanmar | New York | Asia Society

Mara’s soldiers with parrot heads

Tile with Mara’s soldiers with parrot heads. Mingun Pagoda, Sagaing Region. Ca. 1792. Glazed terracotta. H. 9 x W. 9 x D. 13/4 in. (22.9 x 22.9 x 4.4 cm). National Museum, Nay Pyi Taw. Photo: Sean Dungan

Buddhist Art of Myanmar | New York | Asia Society

two ass-headed demons
Glazed ceramic tile
© The Trustees of the British Museum
Height: 20 inches
From Burma (Myanmar), 15th century AD
Demons from the army of Mara defeated by the Buddha

This glazed ceramic plaque depicts two ass-headed demons from the army of the god of death, Mara. While the Buddha was meditating under the bodhi tree at Bodh Gaya, Mara sought to prevent him from attaining enlightenment. He sent armies of demons to dislodge the Buddha by force, and his beautiful daughters to try and tempt the Buddha from this meditation. Finally, the Buddha called upon the Earth-goddess to witness his claim to enlightenment. The Earth shook and Mara fled. Seated Buddha images touching the earth (bhumisparshamudra) refer to this event, and are very popular in Burmese and Thai art from the eleventh century.

Glazed pottery tiles were used on temples at the Burmese capital at Pagan (about 1044-1287). They depicted scenes from both the jatakas (the stories of the previous lives of the Buddha) and the Buddha's life. This tile is of the type placed in niches at the Shwegugyi pagoda at Pegu, built in the later fifteenth century in lower Burma. Other tiles depict pairs of women who came to seduce the Buddha, illustrating the events described above. Pegu was the capital of the Mon kingdom of lower Burma between 1369 and 1539. The Shwegugyi temple and its shrines was built to replicate the topography of the Mahabodhi temple at Bodhgaya, the site of the Buddha's enlightenment. It was one a number of copies of the Mahabodhi temple built in Burma and Thailand between the thirteenth and fifteenth centuries.

Glazed ceramic tile at The British Museum Images

two of the daughters of Mara
Place of origin: Pegu (possibly, made)
Date: 15th century (made)
Materials and Techniques: Terra cotta, glazed with cream, green and brown
Credit Line: Given by Col. E.H. Power
Museum number: 173-1875

This ceramic plaque depicts two of the daughters of Mara elegantly posed against a green background. They are wearing decorative red and green garments and elaborate headdresses and jewellery, each with one hand to her side, the other raised and holding a fan. The plaque probably formed part of a larger series illustrating the Buddha's triumph over evil and the rout of Mara's army. The army was placed around the base of the Shwegugyi pagoda in Pegu to disrupt the Buddha while he meditated and sought enlightenment. It may have been combined with another series showing part or all of the Jataka stories (a series of tales recounting the Buddha's previous lives).

The practice of decorating pagodas with glazed terracotta plaques modelled in relief with Jataka scenes probably began in Burma in the Mon capital of Thahton. It was brought to Pagan by the Burmese king Anirhuddha about the middle of the 11th century, and their use there, as in Pegu in the later 15th century, was probably as much educational as decorative.

Plaque | V&A | © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Mara's Daughter

Mara’s Daughter; From Shwegugyi Temple complex, Ajapala Shrine, Pegu; Ca. 1479; Glazed terracotta; H. 18 x W. 13 x D. 4 in. (45.7 x 33 x 10.2 cm). National Museum, Nay Pyi Taw. (Sean Dungan)

Interview: Bureaucracy, Bumpy Roads No Deterrent to Bringing Myanmar's Art to US | Asia Society

Tile depicting the warriors of Mara.
Place of origin: Burma (made)
Date: late 15th century (made)
Materials and Techniques: Glazed stoneware
Credit Line: Given by Mr. Cyril Newman
Museum number: IS.2-1966

Tile depicting the warriors of Mara. The pious king Dhammaceti (r.1472-92) of Pegu built a series of temples to honour the life of the Buddha. The most distinguished was the temple complex of Shwegugyi, built in 1476. It was decorated with an extensive series of large-scale glazed tiles, many of which illustrated the demonic warriors of Mara's army, sent to disrupt the Buddha's meditation immediately prior to his Enlightenment. This tile, with owl-headed figures bearing swords, is typical of this series.

Plaque | V&A | © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Tile with two green glazed relief figures with human bodies and mouse-like heads. [DCF Court Team 25/2/2003]
Place details: SE ASIA. Myanmar (Burma). Shwegugyi Pagoda Bago (Pegu).
The Pitt Rivers Museum | 1892.41.481

Plaque with elephant-headed warriors
Plaque with elephant-headed warriors
Associated place: Pegu (place of creation)
Date: c. 1479
Material and technique: terracotta, modelled and incised, decorated with green and brown glaze
Ashmolean − Eastern Art Online, Yousef Jameel Centre for Islamic and Asian Art

Tile with Bird-Headed Demons
Burma (Myanmar), Pegu. Title Tile with Bird-Headed Demons. Date 1479. Museum Number M.90.197.1

Image Gallery (Epics of India)

Tiles with Demons | LACMA Collections