religious art of Asia has much in common with religious art of the Western
tradition for it also is placed on a pedestal, admired for its design
elements and composition, and favors disegno interno and Neoplatonism
over disegno esterno. However, the principal difference between the
two traditions is that, as discussed above in the Renaissance chapter,
Western art seeks a balance between the scientific and the spiritual. Asian
art lies 100% within the spiritual realm without any premise of biological
anatomy, proportion, mass, or other elements of naturalistic observation.
Asians reason that if art represents the beings that inhabit the spiritual
floating world between earth and heaven, then it should be wholly Neoplatonic
in its form and inspiration. And, as in this context, if art is in the
service of religion, then the visual images should never degrade or insult
those beings represented.