Rabu, 05 Juni 2013

Rite of Spring on the Buddha's last day

Amber Dorrian, CC Liu, Wisdom Quarterly; Wiki edit; Sister Vajira, Francis Story (DN 16)
Nectar-gathering pollinator on brilliant spring flower (smart-kit.com/WQ)
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Green glass Buddha (spring.org.uk)
The Rite of Spring, the ballet and orchestral concert by the Russian composer Igor Stravinsky, was written for the 1913 Paris season of Sergei Diaghilev's Ballets Russes company, with choreography by Vaslav Nijinsky plus stage designs and costumes by Nicholas Roerich.
  
The ballet nearly caused an audience riot when first performed on May 29th, 1913 at Paris' Théâtre des Champs-Élysées.
Springtime for Occupy Los Angeles
But it rapidly achieved success as a concert piece and was later recognized as one of the most influential musical works of the 20th Century. The score has many novel features, including experiments in tonality, meter, rhythm, stress, and dissonance.
 
The scenario is the celebration of spring by various primitive rituals, at the end of which a sacrificial victim dances herself to death.
 
Arab Spring women's protest
After its explosive premiere the ballet was not performed until the 1920s, when Léonide Massine's re-choreographed version was the first of many innovative productions directed by the world's leading ballet-masters.

Providing "endless stimulation for performers and listeners" alike, The Rite is among the most recorded works in the classical repertoire. More

The Buddha's Final Rest
Sister Vajira, Francis Story (Last Days of the Buddha, Chp. 5, DN 16) Wisdom Quarterly edit
Buddha draped in flowers, Sri Lanka (Original Nomad/simonmonk/flickr.com)
  
1. Then the Buddha addressed Venerable Ananda: "Come, Ananda, let us cross to the farther shore of the river Hiraññavati and go to the Malla Clan's Sal-tree Grove, in the vicinity of Kusinara [Kushinagar]" - "So be it, venerable sir."
 
2. The Blessed One, together with a large company of monastics, went to the farther shore, and there he spoke:
 
3. "Please, Ananda, prepare for me a resting spot between the twin sal trees, with the head to the north. I am weary, Ananda, and want to lie down."
  • COMMENTARY: "From the town of Pava it is three leagues (gavutas) to Kusinara. Walking that distance with great effort and sitting down at 25 places along the way, the Blessed One reached the Sal tree Grove at dusk after the sun had already set. Thus illness befalls humans, crushing all our health. As if one wanted to point to this fact, the Blessed One spoke those words which deeply moved the world: 'I am weary, Ananda, and want to lie down.'" 
"So be it, venerable sir," said Ven. Ananda, and did as the Blessed One asked. Then the Blessed One lay down on his right side, in the lion's posture, resting one foot upon the other, and so disposed himself, mindfully and clearly-comprehending
Flowers from the devas (NancyMargaret/flickr)
4. The twin sal trees then broke out in full bloom, though it was not the flowering season. Those blossoms rained upon the body of the Tathagata. They dropped and scattered, strewn in honor of the Tathagata. Even celestial mandarava flowers and heavenly [akasha-devic] sandalwood powder from the sky rained down upon the body of the Tathagata. They dropped and scattered, strewn in honor of the Tathagata. And the sound of devic voices and heavenly instruments made music in the air in honor of the Tathagata.
  
5. The Blessed One spoke: "Ananda, the twin sala trees are in full bloom, though it is not the flowering season. And the blossoms rain upon the body of the Tathagata; They drop and scatter, strewn upon it... in honor of the Tathagata.
  
6. "Yet it is not thus, Ananda, that the Tathagata is respected, venerated, esteemed, revered, and honored in the highest degree.
  
"But, Ananda, any male or female monastic or layperson who abides by the Dharma, lives uprightly by the Dharma, walks in the way of the Dharma, it is by such a one that the Tathagata is respected, venerated, esteemed, revered, and honored in the highest degree.
  
"Therefore, Ananda, train thus: 'We shall abide by the Dharma, live uprightly by the Dharma, walk in the way of the Dharma.'" More

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