Saturday, 19 January 2013

The Great Buddha Of Kamakura

or the Kamakura Daibutsu in Japanese. It is the second largest bronze statue (the largest is the Todai-ji Daibutsu in Nara).

It is 13.35 metres high (including its base) or 11.312m excluding the base, weigh 121 tons, its face is 2.35metres wide, the eyes are 1 metre wide, mouth 82cm wide, with ears that is 1.9 metre long and its 656 whorls of hair are 18cm tall & 24cm in diameter each.
The only Buddha sculpture in Kamakura to be designated as a National Treasure, the Kamakura Daibutsu embodies Amida Nyorai (one of the loftiest saviour figures in Japanese Buddhism).
Located at Kotokuin Temple in Kamakura which is about 5-10 min walk from Hase station on the Enoden line, an entrance fee of 200yen is charged to enter the temple in order to see the Daibutsu.
and a further 20yen (just 20yen folks) needed to see the interior of this Daibutsu. This Daibutsu is hollow and entering it provides a unique view on how the statue was constructed. Nobody collects your 20yen. It's your honesty and honour to drop that measly 20yen in the box there.

The first two photos may give an impression that the place was deserted but as you can see in the third photo. despite the rain - visitors came in droves.
The Daibutsu was cast in 1252 and was orginally house in a wooden structure, the Great Buddha hall or Daibutsuden but the hall was severely damaged by storms in 1335 and 1369 and the hall was washed away by a tsunami in 1498. However, the Daibutsu itself was completely undamaged.

The Great Kanto earthquake in 1923 moved it two feet from its location but still, the statue was unscathed.

It has been left uncovered and had stood in the open air since after the tsunami.

This bronze Daibutsu was sculpted to replace a wooden Daibutsu which took 10 years to complete and was completed in 1243 only to be damaged by a  storm in 1248!

Both wooden and bronze Daibutsu was built by funds-raising efforts by Lord Inada and monk Joko. (A post about a cenotaph for Lady Inada in future) ^^

At one point, the statue was turned into a gamblers' hideout. Saddened by the condition of the Daibutsu, a monk from Zojoji - monk Yuten spearheaded a plan to restore it and began soliciting for funds in 1712. 
To commemorate monk Yuten and other contributors, four bronze lotus petals were erected and engraved with their names. It's at the rear of the statue.
Proof we were there. Ahaks! We sat here and enjoyed a packet of snacks. ^^
Cold and in pain. Can't eat. Mouth throbbed like nobody's business. Massive headache. It was raining. But somehow, this shot turned out to be a cool one. *double ahaks!* Hahaha

26 comments:

  1. History, facts, figures, a serene Buddha, a photo of Raimie ...

    "O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay! She chortled in her joy."

    My undisputed favourite photo in this, post, however, is that last one. You remind me of Grumpy Cat. :D

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    1. Love that Grumpy Cat!

      I thought you don't do Facebook? You do? Hmph!

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    2. I don't have my own Facebook page and never will, but even non-Facebookers can access Grumpy Cat's page. She's on Tumblr (http://tardthegrumpycat.tumblr.com/) and her own independent site (http://www.grumpycats.com/) as well. I'm a devoted fan. I guess I like grumpy females. :D

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    3. How come you don't come visit me? heh heh

      But gottta agree with you. I think I'll be a fan too. ;)

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  2. One of the most iconic sights in Japan and the home of Japanese samurai culture. I'll pay this place another visit soon I hope :)

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  3. Wow The Kamakura Daibutsu 'survived' 1498 tsunami and The Great Kanto earthquake in 1923

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  4. Oh kesian cold and in pain, No need umbrella? Saw in the background people carry them. You water proof kah?

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    1. Lazy to carry umbrella around. ;p

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  5. Amazing how this giant statue managed to survive 2 natural disasters. Props to you for still managing a cool (no puns intended hehehe) look despite having to bear both toothache and headache.

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    1. Can't spoil other people's day just because you aren't having a blast.

      I cried in pain when the boys sleep though. ;p

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  6. I didn't realize how big it is until people were standing next to it. It is still in good shape after sitting out in the elements and surviving those disasters. Speaking of pain, how's your running coming along?

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    1. It's hard to know how big it is until it is compared to how tiny we are standing near it.

      Running - still running. Am trying to be focused and disciplined training for a full marathon in April. It's Malaysia Women Marathon and support it, I MUST! :)

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  7. Nice Buddha statue! It will look better if there's a smile on the face! : )

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    1. But a smile won't make it look serene. It'll be a happy Buddha. No? ;p

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  8. WOw! The statue survived the earthquake? It's a miracle!

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  9. Why were you in pain? You did not look like it in the last photo! LOL

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    1. My gum was swollen. Made my face look lopsided, and that made ugly frontal photos! ^^!

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  10. Waah, mouth throbbing... headache... salute that you can still have the strength to cruise around... been there but did not enter the statue...

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    1. Can't spoil the other two holiday. Sayang. ;)

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  11. Hi. lina. Already recovered from your tooth and headache? You look like bigger than Daibutu.

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    Replies
    1. Of course! ^^

      Hahaha Imagine if I am bigger than the Buddha! ;)

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  12. The windows at the back of the statue look like wings! The Buddha can fly!! :D

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