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A Japanese Buddhist "Seed Character" painting. The painting with a gold Sanskrit character within a full moon, all floating in a deep blue ground. Sanskrit is an ancient Indo-Aryan language, and the liturgical languages of Hinduism and Buddhism.The character represents the "a" sound and is the first letter of the alphabet. As such it is symbolic of beginnings. The character resting on a lotus blossom, representing purity and perfection. The lotus grows in mud, but blooms in perfection. Similarly Buddha was born of this imperfect world, but transcended it to rise to heaven. With very fine brocade mounting of peony arabesque. 
Edo Period (1600-1868)  
Image 36½"x15¼" Scroll 60½"x23¼" at base



Within Buddhism this in turn represents the all encompassing compassion of Buddha. 

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