Gold Leaves May Ruin Famous Mahamuni Buddha in Mandalay

News in Asia
Gold Leaves May Ruin Famous Mahamuni Buddha in Mandalay

Mandalay's famous Buddha image at Mahamuni Paya needs protection from golden leaves pilgrims put on it, experts say. 

The excessive weight of the golden leaves stuck to the image damage Mahamuni Buddha, the architect who has recently examined the altar on which the image resides reported.

The altar has several cracks which appeared because of the constantly growing weight of the Buddha image. While at the moment the cracks are minor defects, in the course of a decade they could damage the statue which is currently protected by a gold face mask and a metal body cover.

Not only the image can be ruined; the altar itself is highly likely to collapse, too, causing injuries and fatalities to pilgrims who would happen to be at the scene.

To evaluate the risks for the pilgrims, the experts will check the current condition of the altar which is wooden inside and will try to find a way to strengthen it.

The experts insist on the immediate ban of the new gold leaf offerings while the temple authorities reply they cannot stop pilgrims from paying homage to the image and applying new gold leaves.

It is estimated that the statue already bears about 653 kilograms of gold.

The Mahamuni Buddha, or The Great Sage, is one of the most venerated images in Myanmar. According to the lore, it is the last of the five similar Buddha images two other of which are located in India and two remaining ones – in Paradise.


 

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