Borobudur Temple Compounds
Borobudur Temple Compounds is a famous Buddhist architecture with the history of more than one thousand years. It is located in Muntilan, the Regency of Magelang, in Central Java, on a hill measuring 123 meters long and 113 meters wide on the mountain side of Mount Merapi. It is 39 kilometers northwest of Jogjakarta City (Indonesisch: Yogyakarta). This magnificent and splendid architecture of Buddhist art enjoys the same reputation and popularity as the Great Wall of China, Taj Mahal in india, Angkor Wat in Cambodia and pyramids in Egypt, which are collectively called the top five miracles of the ancient orient.
The name Borobudur means “the Buddhist monastery on the hill” in Sanskrit. It was built in the 8th and the 9th centuries, and the whole construction work took more than 10 years. King Shailendra made hundreds of thousands of peasants and slaves build it in order to enshrine a small part of the bone ash of Sakyamuni. In the 15th century, when Islamism spread to Indonesia, Buddhism was on the wane and Borobudur was buried by volcano ash and dense bushes. It was re-excavated in the 19th century.
Borobudur is a solid Buddhist pagoda with no doors, windows or pillars. It was built by laying together more than 200 million andesites and basalts from nearby rivers. The base stones measure about 1 ton each. The base of the pagoda is square. Borobudur covers an area of 12,300 square meters with the height of about 35 meters. The architecture form of the pagoda is according to a combination of creeds of Mahayana and Tantra. The whole complex is just like a huge Mandala (a Sanskrit word that means “circle”). The pagoda has 10 floors, and in the middle of the four sides, there is a straight stone passage leading to the top of the pagoda from the base.
Borobudur is one of the largest Buddhist architectures in the world. In the pagoda, there are 505 Buddhist statues of various sizes, expressions, postures of fingers, palms and arms. The workmanship is excellent and expressive. Inside each floor of the pagoda, there are winding corridors and on the stone walls on each side of the corridor, there carved embossments of various images. Many of the embossments are about Buddhist stories and there are also some are about lives, people, flowers, plants, animals, birds and tropical fruits. The embossments are all precious artistic works for they are delicate and lifelike. Therefore it has the reputation of “Epics on the Stone”. Because Borobudur was built on the hill with insecure foundation, and it has not been renovated for a long time since it was built, the whole complex and embossments are enduring defacement. Thus, in 1973, it took 10 days to repair and renovate it. At present, green mountains, clear water and tall trees come into view there. It has been developed into a national tourist attraction with an area of 85 acres. There have been a number of tourist facilities there. Every year, many tourists from Indonesia and other countries pay a visit there.