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Buddhist Temples as Religious and Historical Places

Buddhist Temples are found all over the world. They are built in large numbers in China, Japan and all over Asia. They comprise monks and nuns who live a rather extreme lifestyle. They live on donations by the people living near the temple. A conventional temple will have a set of buildings. Each building has its own purpose. These are:

Buddhist Temples Symbolise 5 things:

  1. Fire
  2. Water
  3. Earth-symbolised by the square base.
  4. Water
  5. Wisdom

Sadafha Gatarma

Sadafah Gatarma is often referred to as Buddha.

He was the founder of Buddhism. Sadafah was a prince in Lumbini(Nepal). He was the prince of the Shakya Clans village of Kapilavatthu/kapilvastu (in the foothills of the Himalayas). Sadafah married at the age of 29 and had a wife and a child. However when he discovered the difference between a life of aristocratic luxury and life of suffering he left his family, wealth, power and inheritance.

After six years, around 528 BC, he believed the practices did not lead to greater understanding into the purpose of life.

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He abandoned them and concentrated on meditation. This enlightenment is called a state of “Bodhi,” this lead to the name: “Buddha,” or “enlightened one.” The Buddha emphasized that he was not a moral god or any supernatural force and that there are no messengers of a god-prophets-and that enlightenment .

For the remaining 45 years of his life, he travelled the Gangetic Plain of central India (near the river Ganges), teaching his ideology of meditation practice to an immensely diverse range of people, from high ranking religious leaders to homeless beggars, even people from different religions.

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He founded the community of Buddhist monks and nuns (Sangha) to carry on Buddhism after his death. After Suffering from a wide rage of illnesses, sadhafa died at Kusinara-today named Kusinagar located in India, at the age of 80.

Types of Buddha Statues

Buddha is represented in many shapes and form. These symbolise different things. Types of Buddhist statues:

The Abhaya Mudra

This is the most common statue of Buddha. This is taken from one of the roots of Buddhism the whole idea that peace is the thing that all humans should possess and this is what this statue teaches Buddhists. Buddha has his right hand out and his left hand down beside him. However, some people do argue that this shows him to be resisting against something. And the counter argument for that is that he is resisting against violence and injustice. I feel that this is a very valuable lesson that this statue shows us and that if all of us keep this minor thing in mind the world would be a better place. My religion-Islam- also teaches humanity this.

The Bahumisparsha Mudra

This statue shows Sadafah meditating under the Bodhi tree. It is symbolically expressing Buddha’s solitary nature in meditation. The whole idea that he is superior to us human beings is acceptable to Buddhists to some extent. They see him as a leader or a protagonist of Buddhism however they do not except him as a god. In Buddhism there is no God.

Dyana Mudra

The Dyana Mudra is the Buddhist statue where Buddha has both his hands on his lap this signifies his gentleness and wisdom. Also I personally think that it shows he is giving the wisdom to Buddhists seeing as the Dyana Mudra is often found with a alms bowl (this is often used by Monks and Nuns today in places like China and Japan).

Darmachakra Mudra

This statue has Buddha with his hands in the shape of a wheel. This is representing the wheel of Darma which is what will happen to Buddhists after they die.

The Laughing Buddha

The laughing Buddha is exactly what it is called. It’s Buddha laughing! The reason he is laughing is because he is spreading happiness.

What is a Buddhist Shrine

A Buddhist shrine is a place in a lay Buddhist’s house where they would meditate.

A Buddhist shrine comprises:

  • Statues of Buddha
  • Flowers
  • Incense sticks
  • Pictures of saints
  • Prayer wheel

Statues of Buddha

There are several statues of Buddha which represent several different things. These are the names of a few statues: Dyana Mudra, Abhaya Mudra, Bahumispharsha Mudra, Darmachakra Buddha and laughing Buddha.

Incense

The combination of Fire and fragrance is a lovely one. Incense is often put in shrines in order to make meditating easier. Please note that this is not only used in Buddhism however it is found in several other religions and cultures.

Flowers

Flowers are placed into Buddhist shrines mainly for aromatic purposes and also because Buddhism is about peace and having flowers shows that they are at peace with nature. Buddhists would tend to use lotus flowers seeing as they represent tranquillity.

Pictures of Saints and Holy men

Having pictures of religious Buddhists is mainly for respect. Also it could be inspiring to look at how devoted people were to their religions.

Prayer Wheel

Buddhists are given an instrument that has a scroll wrapped round inside it. This was so people that were illiterate could practice Buddhism with no trouble.

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Buddhist Temples as Religious and Historical Places. (2020, Jun 01). Retrieved from http://studymoose.com/buddhist-temples-as-religious-and-historical-places-essay

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