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At Dunhuang; and other caves in China (781-847A.D)
Dunhuang is in the north-western desert of China at the crossroad of important caravan routes.
On the north side of the western wall of the cave is an illustration of Manjusri Bodhisattva. Bodhisattvas are Buddha-designates or higher beings who have temporarily set aside the attainment of nirvana in order to help others find the way, and alleviate suffering. Manjusri personifies wisdom and is shown as eternally young and beautiful. Often he is as here shown riding on a tame lion held by a Kunlun (black person)
Painting at Dunhuang Cave 25, Yulin Grottoes
Note ; it was not only in north west China that this kind of paintings were made ;also south west China in the Shizhong Mountain Grotto Cluster. In the fourth Grotto (of the Saints), there is the middle Buddha Pilu on the right are Samantabhadra on the elephant and the slaves of Kunlun, and on the left is Manjusri riding on a lion. Also in India is he shown with black people.
The map of Tang China shows clearly how Chinese influence was growing along the silk road. Dunhuang was the exit point of the old China situated on the Chinese wall. Chang'an was the tang capital where are found statutes of Kunlun slaves.
Taiping Kuang Chi (Book CCCXL )
In the tenth moon of the sixth year of the Cheng Yuan Period (A.D. 790), Lu Shu was residing at Ch'ien-t'ang…. He had a maid-servant whose name Hsiao Chin ('Little Golden One') and who was about fifteen years old. . . One night she dreamt of, an old man mounted on a huge lion similar in color to the Lion that bears Manju Sri. The lion's speed was so great as to render it all but invisible when it moved. On either side of the lion were K'un-lun slaves to hold the reins. 'It came to my ears,' the old man said to her, that you were being persecuted by demons. For which reason I have come hither from a very great distance ……….