Buddhism is one of the influential religion in the world. Buddhism is not only established as a religion but it also inaugurates philosophies that plays an important role in the history of philosophy. It was evolved in northeastern India in the 5th century BC as a counter of Hindu religion (Santan Dharma). Buddhism is based on the teachings of Siddhartha Gautama, commonly known as “The Buddha”, who was born in Nepal. The purpose of Buddha was to overcome Dukkha (sorrows) and to get rid of the dualism that mankind is crawling in his whole life. In a word it is a goal to attain “Nirvana”. The Buddhism Temples are the center of Buddha’s teaching. The temples also bear the symbol of peace and serenity. Today we are over viewing some the most famous Buddhist temples in the world.
10 Most Famous Buddhist Temples:
10. Haeinsa Temple
Haeinsa, well known as “Temple of Reflection on a Smooth Sea” is one of the three jewel temples in South Korea. Haeinsa is quite famous for being the home of the Tripitaka Koreana, the whole of the Buddhist Scriptures engraved onto 81,350 wooden blocks. First built in 802, the temple had to rebuild in the 19th century after it was burned down in a fire in 1817.
According to Korean Legend, two Korean monks, Suneung and Ijeong returned from China, and healed King Aejang’s wife of her illness. The king ordered the construction of the temple in gratitude of the Buddha’s mercy.
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9. Wat Arun
Wat Arun Ratchawararam Ratchawararamahawihan, located on the Thonburi side of the Chao Phraya River is one of the oldest and best known Buddhist temple in Bangkok, Thailand. The name of the temple attains from the Hindu god “Aruna” who is represented as the radiations of the rising sun. The central prang represents Mount Meru of the Hindu cosmology. . Despite it is called “The temple of Dawn“, the best views of it can be seen in sunset.
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8. Pha That Luang
Situated in Vientiane, Pha That Luang is a gold covered stupa. It is one of the most important Buddhist monument in Laos. The stupa terraces has three level. Each level represents a different stage of Buddhist doctrines. It was built in the 16th century on the ruins of an earlier Khmer temple. The temple was destroyed by a Thai attack in 1828, later reconstructed after 2nd World War. It is our 8th choice in our list of top 10 most famous Buddhist temples around the world.
The Jokhang Temple is one of the famous Buddhist temple, situated in Lhasa. It is the most sacred place in Tibet. The temple attracts thousands of pilgrims each year. It was built during the reign of King Songtsän Gampo. It is well known traditionally that the temple was built for the two wives of the king. The Jokhang temple had been sacked by Mongolian several times but the building remains. It is probably a major tourist attraction and a spiritual center of Lhasa.
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6. Todaiji Temple
Tōdai-ji is a famous Buddhist temple complex that was once one of the powerful Seven Great Temples. It is situated in the city of Nara, Japan. Built in the 8th century by Emperor Shomu, a little remains of the original buildings of Todaiji. It resides one of the largest Buddha statues in Japan. This is one of the temple that UNESCO World Heritage Site listed as one of the “Historic Monuments of Ancient Nara”.
Boudhanath is one of the largest stupas in the world in a suburb of Kathmandu. For its enormous mandala, it is one of the largest spherical stupas in Nepal. In the last few decades, It has become the center of Tibetan Buddhism in Nepal and many refugees from Tibet have settled here .This Bauddha stupa was built just after the death of Buddha. That makes it more special than others probably best known for the Buddha eyes that are featured on all four sides of the tower.
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4. Mahabodhi Temple
The Mahabodhi (Great Enlightenment) Temple is one the most famous Buddhist stupa in Bodh Gaya, India. It is said that Buddha himself attained Nirvana (Enlightenment) here. The holy Bodhi tree is on its western side, next to the temple. In 250 BCE, about 200 years after the Buddha gained Nirvana, great Emperor Asoka built a temple at this spot. The present temple is 5th-6th century old. Mahabodhi Temple is considered at number four in our list of top 10 most famous Buddhist Temples.
3. Shwedagon Pagoda
The Shwedagon Pagoda (or Golden Pagoda) located in Yangon, is the holiest Buddhist shrine in Myanmar. Historians and archaeologists mentioned that the pagoda was built by the Mon people between the 6th and 10th centuries CE. But according to legend, the Shwedagon Pagoda was constructed more than 2,600 years ago. So Mon people might rebuilt it. Base of the stupa is made of bricks covered with gold plates.
Bagan, a city that once was the capital of the “Kingdom of pagan”, located on the banks of the Ayerwaddy River, home to the largest area of Buddhist temples, stupas, pagodas and ruins in the world. The kingdom fell to the Mongols, actually after refusing to pay tribute to Kublai Khan and Bagan in 1287. It was quickly declined as a political center but continued to flourish as a place of Buddhist lessons.
The Borobudur, a Mahayana Buddhist temple is the largest and most famous Buddhist temple in the world. It is located on the Indonesian island of Java, 40 km (25 miles) northwest of Yogyakarta. It was built over a period of some 75 years in the 8th and 9th centuries by the kingdom of Sailendra and abandoned in the 14th century. Borobudur is Indonesia’s most visited tourist attraction for so many generations.