Dkagencies Indian Books |Ever since its origin in the 6th century BC, Buddhism had had an irresistible influence not only on India’s socio-cultural order, but on its religious art traditions as well. With its growth, over the time, into various sects, the bhiksus (monks) adopted settled life in the viharas, rock-shelters, caves, and stupas. Chaityas were built for worship and congregational prayers. The nature-cut caves were converted into cave temples – like, for instance, the cave temples of Ajanta, Ellora, Karle, Bhaja, and Kanheri. And all these were aesthetically adorned with sculptures and paintings illustrating the life and glory of the Buddha.