Buddha

There are Many Statues of Gautama Buddha Around the World That are Very High and the Maximum Tallest Buddha Statue is about 100ft High is in China. But Also the Other Tallest Sitting Buddha Statue is also in Sichuan, the People’s Republic of China. Its height is almost 71 Meters. It is the Tallest in terms of the Sitting Buddha Statue.

The Leshan Giant Buddha is Carved out of a Huge Mountain, Almost 71 meters high and is in a Sitting Position, and the Face is carved as a Calm Looking Buddhist Face.

History

Buddism Though Born in India, Has Got more recognition outside India, Especially it flourished more in the Countries like China, South Korea, Japan, Thailand, and Srilanka.

The History of the Leshan Giant Buddha dates back 1300 years ago. In 723AD a Chinese Monk named Hai Tong started the Construction of this Statue. It was stopped many times due to lack of funding, But Later Hai Tong Disciples Continued the Work and finally finished in 803 AD.

This is Located in Lingyun Road, Shizhong District, Leshan, Leshan, Sichuan, China.

Architecture

This Statue is Carved out of a Huge Mountain Rock, This is the Tallest Statue of Buddha in the Sitting Position. The Statue Depicts “Maitreya” of Gauthama Buddha. The Sculpture is Carved out of a Huge Red Bed Sand Stone and Lies on the Banks of Min River and Dadu River on the Southern Part of Sichuan Province near the City of Leshan.

The Height of the Statue is 71 Metres High Which is Approximately about 235 Ft in Height. The Mountain on Which This statue is Carved is Called Linguyin Mountain.

The Sitting Position Depicts Maitreya Buddha with his hands resting on the Knees and Calmness in his Face. The Shoulders are almost 28 Metres Wide.

Other Noticeable Features of The Leshan Buddha are Nose, Ears, Hair, and Earrings and their Construction. The Hair of the Buddha which is carved is of 1021 Spirals embedded in the Head and if Considered in the Height, The Measurements are as follows. 14.7 Metres in Height and 10 Metres in Width.

His Ears are 7 Metres Long. Almost 5.6 Metres Eye Brows. Fingers Length is 8.3 Metres. The nose is Of 5.6 Metres. Both Mouth and eyes are 3.3 Metres.

The Statue is entirely carved out of Stone, But the ears are designed with Wood, On top of that it is Covered with Mud to make Clay and it is attached to the head.

The Buddha Statue has a Special Mechanism where it protects the statue from Erosion, An Advanced Drainage System has been designed Long back by architects Then. Between the Ears and Head, Several Gutters and Channels which pass through the ears and nose have been carved out to drain the water and make the place dry every time.

Protection

This Site is now Completely Maintained and Protected by Sichuan Province Committee. It was Formed in 1956, Right after the Formation of the People’s Republic of China. All Disaster Management Team and Archeologists are always available and Tourist Maintenence and Protection of the Monument are completely held responsible by that Committee.

This is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, So UNESCO Sends funds to the Committee for the Protection and Repair works. There were many phases of Repair works for this site. The First Phase of repair work was funded by World Bank. In 2002, The Second Phase of repair work started and completed after repairing few rocks near feet.

Climate Effect

Leshan

The Statue has withstood many climatic changes over 1200 years, As it is carved on Cliff. There are few damages due to Human Interference and also Climatic effects like Acid Rain. Leshan Giant Statue has been affected by Pollution which is caused by Construction works in that area and also Tourist Visits also affected the Site.

Quick Notes

  • Almost it Took around 90 Years to Carve Leshan Buddha Statue out of Red bed Sandstone Mountain Rock during Tang Dynasty.
  • It was Locals who believed that Carving a Statue of Maitreya Buddha would Bring them Happiness and thus King decided to do So.
  • There is a Un noticeable Hole at the Chest Position of the Statue which can’t be seen by the naked eye because of the large structure, There use to be a stele of reconstruction during Song Dynasty.
  • But it was later destroyed in Cultural Revolution.
  • There used to be rumours that Buddha uses to express his emotions of Sad and Happy based on the Conditions.
  • Buddha Use to close eyes when the situations were sad, Open eyes and Smile when situations were happy.
  • But these rumours were squashed by Archeological Department because it is due to climatic conditions and the Height of the Illusion made buddha look different in different climatic conditions.
  • The Halo of Buddha Appears, This is because of the Natural Phenomenon caused by the Diffraction of sunlight on the Surface of water droplets in the Cloud.
  • The Statue was built by Locals with the Help of the Tang Dynasty to appease/ Thank Gods for Happiness.

UNESCO

This Site has Cultural Importance, Based on Cultural Category, Leshan Giant Buddha was Granted UNESCO World Heritage Site Status in 1996.

How to Reach

The Chinese name of this Location is 乐山大佛 (Leshan Dafo).

The Exact Location is Lingyun Street, Shizhong District, Leshan, Sichuan Province. This Location is almost 130 km away from Chengdu.

Summer and Monsoons are the best seasons to Visit Leshan, Because during sunny days you can be able to see grandeurs of the structure and During monsoon, Buddha Looks great in drizzling droplets of water.

Between April to October is the best season, This place is open for only two seasons, Ferry Rides are always Jammed, So be early to take a ferry ride. Avoid ferry ride when more people are boarding. But it will be a very great experience.

The Opening dates and Timings of Leshan Buddha Statue are

April 1st to October 7th: 7:30am to 6:30pm

October 8th to March 31st: 8am to 5:30pm.

Entry Fee : 80 Yuan / 13 USD

Ferry Ride: 120 Yuan / 19 USD

Accomodations

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