I guess the picture you are reproducing belongs to the Hinayana tradition
or early Mahayana, it may be a Gandhara statue.

When Buddhism spread out in all directions from the north of India, the
teaching arrived also in nowadays' Pakistan and Afghanistan. Since
Alexander the Great (the Greek military leader who had defeated Persia),
states with Greek culture had been persisting in that area.
The Greeks had always been good sculptors and they made their statues in
their traditional Greek way. This is why they would start to carve Buddha
statues after they had got in contact with Buddhism. And they carved the
Buddha with a traditional Greek hairstyle -- what seems like a helmet to

One may speculate that it was the ascetic Buddha before his enlightenment
who made the strongest impression on those believers, so they liked this
ascetic appearance.

When Buddhism later arrived in China, the Chinese preferred another look
and made what you call the "fat guy" sculptures. Seems the ascetic
appearance did no impress them so much.

Gasshoo, Kai

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 (Embedded image moved to file: pic18467.jpg)                                   
 Did those guys wear helmets? It seems like all those sculpts have the same 
 BTW, he looks really skinny, did he have to sit during the sculpture? Looks 
 he should have made friends with Bodhidharma's staff.                          
 So who is the fat guy? I thought that was Buddha? Sitting without getting 
 is not good. He was definitely living out of balance.                          

(Embedded image moved to file: pic06334.gif)


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