Dhyana Buddha to be the cynosure

Updated - October 22, 2015 05:41 am IST

Published - October 22, 2015 12:00 am IST - GUNTUR:

The 125-feet tall Dhyana Buddha statue at Amaravati.- Photo: T. Vijaya Kumar

The 125-feet tall Dhyana Buddha statue at Amaravati.- Photo: T. Vijaya Kumar

At a time when the foundation stone for Amaravati is laid on Thursday, an iconic work of art, the 125-feet-tall Dhyana Buddha statue there is becoming the face of ‘Brand Amaravati’.

The statue, which is on a 4.5-acre site on the Krishna bank, is set to become the crowning glory in the Capital region. The 125-feet-tall statue embellished with sculptures from the Amaravati School of Art and was sculpted by the Joint Director of Social Welfare, Guntur, R. Mallikarjuna Rao.

It was in 2002 that Mr. Rao, then posted as D.D, Social Welfare Department, conceived the idea of the Buddha statue seated in a meditative posture.

“The spiritual virtuosity of the Mahastupa at Amaravathi, India’s greatest architectural achievement during 150-200 AD, inspired me and I wanted to recreate the magnificence of the Amravati School of Art and conceived a giant statue of Buddha,” Mr. Mallikarjuna Rao told The Hindu on Wednesday.

The Guntur district administration provided 4.5 acre of land and through various grants by the government and through money raised by selling his paintings, Mr. Rao raised Rs.1.50 crore. Rao began the work in 2004. Rao used a knife to scrape the shapes and chisel them.

The statue stands on massive Lotus pandal supported by eight pillars symbolizing the Buddha’s eight fold path to attain salvation. The area is divided into four zones depicting the four noble truths.

The five ayaka pillars made of sand stone symbolize the five stages of life.

Inside the statue, is a three layered museum which has reliefs of famous sculptures of Amaravati Art including events associated with enlightenment of Buddha, enlightenment under Bodhi tree and all other events in the life of Buddha.

Mr. Rao had taken care to engrave the delicate features of face, limbs on the figures inside the museum.

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