Question by : Why does the laughing Buddha look different from the meditating Buddha?
Are they different people?

I noticed this difference because my Grandma has a laughing Buddha statue in her house and when I was very young, I remember visiting a giant Buddha statue (there were a lot of stairs). Both looked different.

I don’t mean to be ignorant, so I apologize if I have offended you.

Best answer:

Answer by Jeffrey H.
Here’s your answer:

The Bible is literally “God-breathed” (2 Timothy 3:16)

We find, as we read the pages of biblical history, that whether we are talking about one-on-one relationships or societies, “there is nothing new under the sun” (Ecclesiastes 1:9).

His revealed Word, the Bible, is so important that Jesus said of it, “Man does not live on bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4).

The Bible tells us how one truly gets to heaven, and it is not by being good or by being baptized or by anything else we do (John 14:6; Ephesians 2:1-10; Isaiah 53:6; Romans 3:10-18, 5:8, 6:23, 10:9-13). Along this line, God’s Word shows us just how much God loves us (Romans 5:6-8; John 3:16). And it is in learning this that we are drawn to love Him in return (1 John 4:19).

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18 Responses to “Why does the laughing Buddha look different from the meditating Buddha?”

  • MarkitZero:

    they are two different people

  • RaΖor:

    Aqua Buddha is my favorite

  • Steve H:

    I believe they are different Buddhas.

    Buddha is more of a title than a name. The laughing Buddha is the Chinese depiction of Buddha Maitreya, the Buddha that’s next in line to come to the Earth. The other common one is Siddhartha, who is the one people usually think of when they say “Buddha.”

    I think the Chinese one is based on an existing Chinese deity called “Budai” who sort of became a Buddha when Buddhism entered China and absorbed existing folklore.

  • Magpie:

    Yes, they are different.

    The “laughing Buddha” is actually Bodhai, or Hotei, a pre-Buddhist deity of abundance and contentment (and incidentally the Japanese equivalent to Santa Claus). As Buddhism spread through China and Japan, local gods were absorbed into the religion as Buddhas.

  • Curling Kitteh:

    They’re different people. One is The Buddha, while one is A buddha (meaning an enlightened person).

    The meditating Buddha is Siddhartha, the founder of the religion of Buddhism. The laughing Buddha is a Chinese folk deity called Ho Tei or Budai, based on a Chinese monk of the Chan school of Buddhism.

  • dewcoons:

    THE Buddha (Siddhārtha Gautam) was a teacher in India around 500 BC. While A Buddha is a person who has been spiritually enlightened. The Buddhist religion recognized many different “Enlightened Ones” over the century. Including the Laughing “Enlightened One” and the Mediating “Enlightened One”. Yes, they are different people.

    Unlike the Christian religion where its founder (Jesus) is worshiped, in the Buddhist religion “the Buddha” is only seen as a teacher. He is not worshiped. He is not seen as divine or as the savior, etc. Only the first of many (including some alive today) who are enlightened and able to teach about the nature of the universe.

  • Blue Foots™:

    It’s all in the facial expressions.
    :o ) :o D :o

  • Rallie Florencio C:

    Only the Chinese Buddhists would have different representations of the Buddha according to its Auspicious nature, Buddha is not a person nor a deity, it is merely a title given to a person who have achieve the state of enlightenment. The laughing Buddha is merely an image formed for joy and wealth since the fat belly meant well fed or successful. The meditating Buddha tells us of the way we can find peace within by reflecting in silence and quiet contemplations.
    Prince Siddharta of India was a slim but healthy body who have achieved enlightenment or Illuminations called Buddhahood and his teachings grew and spread to China. There is also a possiblity that it may no longer be Prince Siddharta who came to China but someone who is a Chinese sage that also achieved the same title (since being Buddha like being Christ can be achieved by anyone who walks in the path of truth) and the many faces of Buddha in the area were merely the influences set by their own culture and tradition.

  • maltesedingus:

    Meditating Buddha is seeking enlightenment. Laughing Buddha has attained it.

  • Nitai:

    the laughing Buddha is the future Buddha and with his jolliness he will make people happy and enlightened, wake them up from sadness and distress.

  • Bleeding Rachel:

    I don’t know.

  • Christian forever:

    yes their different, did u know that the fat buddha is the original Siddhattha ,THE BUDDHA. but he wasn’t fat

  • doo dah:

    the so’called “laughing Buddha” is a depiction of Bhodi (Maitreya) in that form . . . . not the same thing, but the same basic belief.



  • Amen:

    Because they are two different people.

    The Laughing Buddha isn’t Buddha, it’s Ho Tei or Budai.


  • Daniel:

    Cuz he’s a fag

  • chin:

    because he is laughing.

  • daughtereponymous:

    The artiest who made it wanted to see him smile, I wished I knew.

    It only stone, do you know that?

    I have tried all day for 5 hr. now and reset my pass word to get new questions… something is wrong… I think I am off R&S and I do not know why. I am not smilling … Do hope some one has your answer. Seek the One whom your soul loves, for when He gave you your soul it came form Him. And when the last breath on earth is taken may He come and kiss you with His Eternal Breath. May G-D not weaken your hand in finding Him in all you do and say.

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