What Is the Meaning of the Lucky Buddha Statue?

Buddha statues are representative of the religious teachings of Siddhartha Gautama and his search for enlightenment. Of the many types of statues available, the Laughing Buddha (statue which appears to be smiling or laughing with a pot-bellied stomach) is said to be lucky. The presence of this statue reflects good fortune and holds both aesthetic and inspirational value to those in its presence.

Who was Buddha?

The term "Buddha" generally refers to an Indian prince named Siddhartha Gautama who lived around 500 BC, whose quest for enlightenment ultimately led him to be called Buddha (meaning "awakened one"). Others have been given this title before, however Siddhartha's widely taught philosophic teachings have proved so valuable that he is known as "the" Buddha.

Lucky Buddha Statue

Buddha is often depicted in the form of a statue. The Laughing Buddha (or Happy Buddha) is considered to be lucky and will bring about a sense of happiness. The statue often depicts a smiling or laughing Buddha with a large, round belly.

Meaning of Statues

When a Buddha statue is placed in a home, it is said that the statue will bring about good luck and fortune. These statues are also common gift items. The placement of a statue in a public venue is said to bring in good vibes and serve as spiritual inspiration for humans to strive for inner peace and happiness.

Significance of Position and Appearance

Buddha statues often depict the Buddha in a variety of ways, each difference being significant. Most often, statues show Buddha sitting in a meditative position. Other statues depict him on a lotus blossom (symbolising self-realisation) or in a reclining position (symbolising life's end on Earth). The Medicine Buddha holds a myrobalan plant in one hand, intended to help heal disease. Half-closed eyes indicate a meditative state and elongated ear lobes refer to hearing the world's needs. Hand gesturing (mudras) typically refers to Buddha's protection or teaching.


Many Chinese Buddha statues are hand-carved out of porcelain or ceramic. However, other materials are also used for the making of these statues--including metal, brass, bronze, gold, granite, sandstone and wood.

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About the Author

Based in Vancouver, Janet Veverka is a freelance writer and artist for Pink Olive Designs. She also blogs under the tag IMAGINATIONmama for Veverka received her Bachelor of Arts degree in arts management from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1999 before working in Europe for 5 years and then returning to North America.