BOROBUDUR | Exploring The Beauty Of The World's Largest Buddhist Temple • illuminaija
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BOROBUDUR | Exploring The Beauty Of The World’s Largest Buddhist Temple

   
   

BOROBUDUR | Exploring The Beauty Of The World’s Largest Buddhist Temple

Borobudur is a 9th-century Mahayana Buddhist temple in the Magelang Regency, not far from the town of Muntilan, in Central Java, Indonesia. It is the world’s largest Buddhist temple.

The temple consists of nine stacked platforms, six square and three circulars, topped by a central dome. 

It is decorated with 2,672 relief panels and 504 Buddha statues. The central dome is surrounded by 72 Buddha statues, each seated inside a perforated stupa.

Built in the 9th century during the reign of the Sailendra Dynasty, the temple design follows Javanese Buddhist architecture, which blends the Indonesian indigenous cult of ancestor worship and the Buddhist concept of attaining Nirvana.

BOROBUDUR | Exploring The Beauty Of The World’s Largest Buddhist Temple

The temple demonstrates the influences of Gupta art that reflects India’s influence on the region, yet there are enough indigenous scenes and elements incorporated to make Borobudur uniquely Indonesian.

   
   

The monument is a shrine to the Buddha and a place for Buddhist pilgrimage.

The pilgrim journey begins at the base of the monument and follows a path around the monument, ascending to the top through three levels symbolic of Buddhist cosmology: Kāmadhātu (the world of desire), Rūpadhātu (the world of forms) and Arūpadhātu (the world of formlessness).

The monument guides pilgrims through an extensive system of stairways and corridors with 1,460 narrative relief panels on the walls and the balustrades.

Borobudur has one of the largest and most complete ensembles of Buddhist reliefs in the world. 

BOROBUDUR | Exploring The Beauty Of The World’s Largest Buddhist Temple

BOROBUDUR | Exploring The Beauty Of The World’s Largest Buddhist Temple

Borobudur is the largest Buddhist temple in the world and ranks with Bagan in Myanmar and Angkor Wat in Cambodia as one of the great archeological sites of Southeast Asia.

Borobudur remains popular for pilgrimage, with Buddhists in Indonesia celebrating Vesak Day at the monument. Borobudur is Indonesia’s single most visited tourist attraction.

It covers an enormous area, measuring 123 x 123 meters. The architecture and stonework of this temple have no equal. And it was built without using any kind of cement or mortar!

BOROBUDUR | Exploring The Beauty Of The World’s Largest Buddhist Temple

The structure is like a set of massive interlocking Lego blocks held together without any glue.

The temple has remained strong even through ten centuries of neglect. It was rediscovered in 1815, buried under volcanic ash.

In the 1970s the Indonesian Government and UNESCO worked together to restore Borobudur to its former majesty The restoration took eight years to complete and today Borobudur is one of Indonesia and the world’s most valuable treasures.

Get Around

The best way to explore this site is on foot. As you climb to the top of this magnificent temple you will marvel at the intricately detailed stone carvings displayed on the walls of the temple.

   
   

BOROBUDUR | Exploring The Beauty Of The World’s Largest Buddhist Temple

You will certainly miss a great experience if you visit this enormous temple without learning about its history and importance which are captured on its many reliefs.

   
   

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