Buddha Statue - Antique Ayutthaya Style Seated Enlightenment Buddha Statue - 29cm/12"

What Does the Enlightenment or 'Calling the Earth to Witness' Buddha Mean?

By Amy Underdown, London, UK

Siddhartha Gautama, who came to be known as the Buddha or the Enlightened One, taught his beliefs and spread his knowledge over a span of 45 years. Nearly 2500 years later, Buddhism remains one of the largest religions in the world. It is perhaps no wonder, then, that the Buddha is depicted in many various ways across art and sculpture. The perfect way to create a positive space for meditation in the home.

Here we discuss the meaning behind the Bhumisparsa or Enlightenment Buddha. 

The Enlightenment or ‘Calling the Earth to Witness’ Buddha, also called the Earth Touching Buddha, portrays the Buddha on the brink of Enlightenment. It depicts the moment in which Siddhartha Gautama was nearly overcome by the demon Mara, but was able to resist. As a witness to this strength in rejecting the material world, the Buddha called upon the earth goddess, who washed away Mara with a flood. 

The Buddha statue depicting the mudra is always shown in the seated position, with the right hand reaching over the knee so that all five fingers extend downwards to touch the earth. 

Representing unshakability, the Bhumisparsa mudra is symbolic of the triumph of the spirit over matter and its liberation from worldly trappings. The gesture is believed to be an invocation of the earth goddess, who witnessed the Buddha’s ascendance to the state of enlightenment. 

When this gesture of the right hand is combined with the placement of the upturned left hand on the lap, in the dhyana or meditation mudra, it is thought to signify the union of skilful means (upaya) and wisdom (prajna).

This statue is perfect to bring into the home in order to stay focused on Buddhism and overcoming earthly obstacles.

Enlightenment Buddha