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19 The “Chalice of Poison”

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Chapter Summary

This chapter discusses some very important events in Roerichs' Himalayan Ashram. The first of these was the "miraculous" apparition of the Buddha Chalice predicted some ten years earlier. The second miracle seems also to have been Roerich-made. The Chalice appeared on the very eve of Nikolai's and Yuri's departure for their Manchurian Expedition, which was to start the model agricultural cooperatives, thereby laying the foundation of the New Country. The mysterious Chalice was pictured by Sviatoslav Roerich as a crude mendicant's alms-bowl. The chalice was believed to be wandering from place to place across Buddhist countries and it remained at Purushapatra, the capital of the kingdom of Gandhara, when Fa-Hsien visited the place. It was prophesied by Indian Buddhists that the great relic would disappear at the time of decline of the Buddhist teachings and would reappear again shortly before the coming of the Buddha Maitreya.

Keywords: Buddha Chalice; Buddha Maitreya; Fa-Hsien; Himalayan Ashram; New Country; Nikolai Roerich; Purushapatra; Sviatoslav Roerich; Yuri Roerich

10.1163/9789004270435_020
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