Houseki no Kuni is one of the most excellent anime 2017.
This anime gives us mysterious atmosphere and we can find many motifs from Buddhism.
Villains (?) of the story called Lunarians are very similar to Buddhist statues.
Their shapes maybe are come from the statues called “Bodhisattva on Cloud” in the Phoenix Hall at Byodoin Temple in Kyoto.
When they are slashed by Jewels in anime, we can see very strange inside structure.
It just looks like roots of lotus.
The plant of lotus is a symbol of Buddhism and is regarded as a holy flower.
(By the way, roots of lotus are very good for cooking.)
The Lunarians have many motifs of Buddhism.
Of course, Bodhisattva never attacks the earth.
Original manga author Haruko Ichikawa (市川 春子) talked in an interview.
“When I had attended a Buddhism high school, I read a scripture of Buddhism. It said that the Pure Land (=heaven or paradise) is made with jewels. I was thinking that the Pure Land can relieve all of existence, but jewels are only used for decoration. It made me feel vaguely that the power of Buddha is not almighty. And I wondered where they find there jewels. I got an idea that a team of Buddha come to hunt jewels for decorate. It’s interesting.”
One of the most important theory of Buddhism is “all is vanity”.
All things are in flux and nothing is permanent.
It may sound paradoxical, but jewels are symbol of permanent. Then, the Pure Land is decorated by jewels.
The characters in Houseki no Kuni are composed with jewels. They are immortal and have perpetual youth.
And main character Phos has been replaced his/her body parts with agate, gold, silver and shells (from Ventricosus).
Cf episode 5
These are the elements of the Seven Treasures of Buddhism called Shippou(七宝).
Shippou means very precious thing to be found in the Pure Land and is composed with agate, gold, silver, shells, lapis lazuli and crystal.
So Phos is seemed to become the treasure of Buddhism. It’s very suggestive.
On the other hand, Phos has been changing his/her personality gradually after his body parts replaced. All is vanity, nothing is permanent. Human mind is also like that. Does only the brain think ? Changing body leads changing mind ? Ah, paradox !
I think it will be answered by next story.
Original manga has been publishing now and I hope a season 2 !