Borobudur Temple

Borobudur temple is a temple which became a pride of Indonesian people because it is ever been included into the 7 wonders of the world. It also becomes the largest Buddhist temple in the world. This temple is located in Borobudur Village, Magelang, Central of Java, Indonesia. It is approximately 100 km from Semarang, 86 km from Surakarta, and 40 km from Jogjakarta. It was found as a place of worship for the Mahayana Buddhist by Sailendra dynasty in 800 AD. It was first discovered by Sir Thomas Stanford Raffles in 1814. At that time, it was found crushed and buried in the ground.

Originally, it has 10 levels which have overall height about 42 meters. However, after the reparation, the height of Borobudur become approximately 34.5 meters with overall building area about 15,129 m2. The front side of Borobudur temple is facing eastwards, although each side of the temple has similar form. There are 3 main levels of the realm in Borobudur. The third level is Kamadhatu (the realm of lust), Rupadhatu (tangible realm), and Arupadhatu (formless realm).

There are so many reliefs on Borobudur’s wall which total is about 1,460 panels. These reliefs tell about ancient stories written In Sanskrit language and read by Mapradakisana way. Mapradakisana is a way to read in accordance with the clockwise direction. The way to read the story is starting from the east side of the gate at every level of the temple. There are so many stories written on Borobudur’s wall. The first story on this relief is Karmawibhangga which written on the foot of this temple. It tells about karma. Karma is the law of cause and effect obtained by humans. This relief depicts human actions both reprehensible and commendable along with what will they have. The next relief is Laitawistara. These reliefs lined in the stairs on the south side of temple. The numbers of this relief are 120 figures which illustrate the story of the Buddha from birth to become a Buddhist. And then last are Jataka and Awadana relief. This relief tells the story about Buddha before he was born.

Besides decorated with reliefs, Borobudur also has so many sculptures which become a symbol of the Buddha embodiment. The statues are sitting cross-legged in the lotus position and show a certain hand gesture. These are located at Rupadhatu level. There are 432 sculptures there which are lined sequentially in every niche of this level. In the first row, there are 104 niches, in the second row there are 104 niches, in third row 88 niches, in the fourth row 72 niches, and fifth rows 64 niches. Beside sculpture, Borobudur temple also has Stupa. There are 72 Stupas at the level of Aruphadatu. Those stupas are spread in the court at this stage. In the first court, there are 32 stupas, in the second court 24 stupas, and 16 stupas on the third court.

Since the discovery of Borobudur temple, there are so many Buddhist statues theft. Originally, the amount of Buddha statues is 504 statues. More than 300 statues have been damaged. Most of the statues of Buddha are headless because often being stolen to be used in a museum collection.

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