Freshly exhumed from the grave and put up for sale by the very people who oppressed the religion he brought to China more than 1000 years ago, Bodhidharma might not be too happy if he were reincarnated today.

He was an outsider- a Persian- who was thought to be large and excessively hairy, but the conveyor of Chan Buddhism to China in the 5th or 6th century; and it is he who is first taught kung fu to Shaolin monks which they excelled at, and evolved through the ages.

Wood:

bodhidharmaba

Metal:

bodhidharmaaa

bodhidharmaba

  • See this auction: sold 09/23/2016 $28.57 by mmholg

At first the Shaolin monks rejected him, and he went to a nearby cave and stared at a wall for 9 years without speaking. Accounts then differ on what happened next, some say the monks accepted him and he taught there for some time, some say he passed away right there- seated upright and still staring at the wall in the cave, and some say his legs atrophied after not moving for that long- which is why Japanese dolls of his likeness (Daruma dolls) have no legs.

Ceramic:

bodhidharmaaa

This glaze is called “ox blood”or Langyao hong. First invented in the Tang dynasty, it was also produced by royal kilns, and was highly prized by the well-to-do who were the only ones who could afford it.

These ox blood Bodhidharma statues may be a relatively more recent than some of the others, and reflect some of the current personal confiscations of property of Chinese well-to-do whom the Chinese government has deemed as being “corrupt”, which numbered over a million souls in 2016 after only 3 years according to official government sources.

Search for “Bodhidharma” on Ebay:

  • 2,059 on 09/29/2016 including 42 auctioned in 10 days
  • 2,137 on 10/11/2016 including 50 auctioned in 10 days
  • 2,268 on 10/27/2016 including 61 auctioned in 10 days
  • 2,581 on 01/06/2016 including 64 auctioned in 10 days
  • 2,669 on 02/26/2016 including 56 auctioned in 10 days
  • 2,997 on 04/15/2017 including 72 auctioned in 10 days

Search for “Damo” in Antiques on Ebay:

  • 2,321 on 04/15/2017 including 41 auctioned in 10 days

Search for “Daruma” on Ebay (most of these appear to be legally obtained Japanese goods unlike the previous two name searches which are mainly Chinese goods):

  • 2,158 on 04/15/2017 including 72 auctioned in 10 days

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