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Rachel M. Ward


May 22-26.

the Smithsonian 3D cosmic buddha. meditation in Gandhi hall. 

After practicing in TinkerCAD with our "Buddha Junk Food" assignment, we will continue to consider the design of our 3D Buddha models. In our classwork, we will focus on the unique symbology and iconography of various Buddhas from different cultures and times as it traveled out of India and along the Silk Road. For instance, we will discuss hand mudras (positions) that we see in great variation in the sculptures (again, focusing on ones from The Met catalog). Mudras are often indicative of certain meditation postures. As such, on Wednesday we will delve deeper into different types of Buddhist meditation — not just consider the Buddha's posture and hands — but also to learn about the practices of the monks in various of sects of Buddhism. Most importantly, last week the class voted on our next "mini campus field trip" (the last being the Sculpture Scavenger Hunt) — and the winner was a form of "resting meditation" (not sleeping!) In Gandhi Hall. In contrast, the following day (Thursday), we researched one Buddha without hands — the Smithsonian's Cosmic Buddha. We interacted with their 3D Model to explore how they — like our Mysterious Sculptures from last week — "pieced together" the story of his missing hand mudras. After this in-class assignment, we experimented with an at-home 3D scanner iOS app to 360-scan our hands in various mudras positions to, potentially, import into TinkerCAD. Is it possible we could pair our own hands with the Smithsonian Buddha's missing ones? After learning about the Eightfold Path next week, we will decide on the final symbols and meanings we will use in our own sculptures. We will need to print these next week as we prepare to begin the next section of this Unit that will carry us to the end of the term: Christianity. 

Toy Brain


May 22

Today was a double period of English, but an assignment was emailed related to our "mini campus field trip" tomorrow:

I found an insightful video that I'd like for you to watch for homework — it discusses one form of (Theravāda Buddhist) meditation called “metta." It also explains the meaning of the Guan Yin sculptures which many of you encountered in your Met Collection research following our Sculpture Scavenger Hunt. Lastly, I am always open to incorporating visual/artistic learning projects, so please let me know what you think of the “Bamboo of Wisdom” paintings and the “Kin Tsugi” practice. 


May 23

Today is another double period of English. Please check Blackbaud and continue working on any missing assignments. The video below is related to our "mini campus field trip" tomorrow. Last week, we voted on practicing different forms of meditation in the Gandhi room. Our goal is to understand the various monks practices from the different sects of Buddhism we are learning about in our coursework.

White Sand and Stone


May 24

Today, we do our mini campus field trip that we voted on last week. We will be meeting in the Gandhi room to discuss the different forms of Buddhist meditation. This will help us understand the monks' practice from each Buddhist tradition we have encountered in our coursework. Today, the forms meditations, we practiced were: Vipassana and metta meditation (loving kindness exercise) in Theravada Buddhism. We also tried zazen which comes from the Soto Zen Buddhist Tradition. Click below for details about the final meditation we tried in class.


May 25

Today, we will focus all of our attention on 3D models and a final discussion of Buddhist symbols in preparation for the design of our Buddhas for printing. Over the weekend, readings about the 8-fold path and other important Buddhist ideologies (beliefs). We will relate 5 of these beliefs to our own life which are how we will choose the TinkerCAD objects that will surround our Buddha for 3D printing.

1. Watch videoSmithsonian 3D Digitization Lab

2. Interactive Object: Cosmic 3D Buddha

3. Worksheet (Graded): 3D Cosmic Buddha Worksheet

4. Explore the Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara 3D Object

4. 3D Scan Hand (see Rachel) using an iOS app.

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3D Printer


May 26

Today, prior to the holiday weekend, we will be catching up on any missing homework or assignments in class. Please check Blackbaud for any submissions marked as Missing. Over the weekend, if you feel so inclined, experiment with some 3D scanning apps on your phone. In class yesterday, we tried scanning a couple of hand mudras using the 3d Scanner App™ for iPhone. Have a lovely Memorial Day and see you Tuesday. 

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