Borobudur Temple Archaeological Park

The Sailendra dynasty built this Largest Buddhist monument in the world between AD 780 and 840. The Sailendra are the ruling dynasty in Central Java at the time. It was built as a place for glorifying Buddha and a pilgrimage spot to guide mankind from worldly desires into enlightenment and wisdom according to Buddha.

This monument was discovered by the British in 1814 under Sir Thomas Stanford Raffles, it was until 1835 that the entire area of the temple has been cleared.

Borobudur built in the style of Mandala which symbolizes the universe in Buddhist teaching. This structure is square shaped with four entry point and a circular center point. Working from the exterior to the interior, three zones of consciousness are represented, with the central sphere representing unconsciousness or Nirvana.

Evidence suggests that Borobudur was constructed in the 9th century and subsequently abandoned following the 14th-century decline of Hindu kingdoms in Java and the Javanese conversion to Islam. Worldwide knowledge of its existence was sparked in 1814 by Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles, then the British ruler of Java, who was advised of its location by native Indonesians.

Borobudur has since been preserved through several restorations. The largest restoration project was undertaken between 1975 and 1982 by the Indonesian government and UNESCO, followed by the monument’s listing as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Kamadhatu on Borobudur Temple

Borobudur’s hidden Kamadhatu level consists of 160 reliefs depicting scenes of Karmawibhangga Sutra, the law of cause and effect. Illustrating the human behavior of desire, the reliefs depict robbing, killing, rape, torture and defamation.

A corner of the covering base has been permanently removed to allow visitors to see the hidden foot, and some of the reliefs. Photography of the entire collection of 160 reliefs is displayed at the Borobudur Museum which is within the Borobudur.

Rapudatu The Borobudur Archaeological Park.

The four square levels of Rapadhatu contain galleries of carved stone reliefs, as well as a chain of niches containing statues of Buddha. In total there are 328 Buddha on these balustrade levels which also have a great deal of purely ornate reliefs.

The Sanskrit manuscripts that are depicted on this level over 1 300 reliefs are Gandhawyuha, Lalitawistara, Jataka and Awadana. They stretch for 2.5km. In addition there are 1 212 decorative panels.

Arupadhatu

The three circular terraces leading to a central dome or stupa represent the rising above the world, and these terraces are a great deal less ornate, the purity of form is paramount.

The terraces contain circles of perforated stupas, an inverted bell shape, containing sculptures of Buddha, who face outward from the temple. There are 72 of these stupas in total. The impressive central stupa is currently not as high as the original version, which rose 42m above ground level, the base is 9.9m in diameter.

Unlike the stupas surrounding it, the central stupa is empty and conflicting reports suggest that the central void contained relics, and other reports suggest it has always been empty.

The Reliefs in Borobudur Park

The total of 504 Buddha are in meditative pose, and the 6 different hand positions represented throughout the temple, often according to the direction the Buddha faces.

The Borobudur Temple Corridors

During the restoration in the early 20th century, it was discovered that two smaller temples in the region, called Pawon and Mendut, are positioned accurately in line with the Borobudur Temple. Pawon temple is located 1.15 km from Borobudur while Mendut Temple is located 3 km from Borobudur.

It is believed that there is mutual religious relationship between the three temples, although the exact ritual process remains a mystery. The three temples are used to form a route for the Waisak Day Festival held each year on the day of the full moon in April or May.

The festival commemorates the birth, enlightenment and the death of Gautama Buddha.

source : borobudurpark.com