His Holiness the Gyalwang Karmapa Visits the Mahabodhi Temple Complex in Bodhgaya
16 November, 2013, Bodhgaya
In the first official event of the Gyalwang Karmapa’s 2013-2014 winter programme in Bodhgaya, he visited the central shrine of Buddhism, the 1500 year old Mahabodhi temple complex.
Escorted by the Monk-in-Charge, the Secretary of the Mahabodhi Management Committee, and the District Magistrate, Gyalwang Karmapa went directly to the Mahabodhi temple shrine room where he offered a three-piece set of robes of hand-woven golden silk to the image of Lord Buddha, followed by seven bowls of fruit, flowers and food. As the monk-attendant draped the new robes over the Buddha image, His Holiness prostrated three times before commencing prayers in praise of Lord Buddha and for the peace and well-being of the world and all sentient beings. The short ceremony concluded with the lighting of a butter lamp.
Hundreds of followers from all over the world thronged behind him as His Holiness circumambulated the temple, first on the inner route and then on the outer route.
While His Holiness completed his circumambulation, the sound of prayers and chanting from the Thai congregation, assembled for the gilding of the Mahabodhi temple’s dome, filled the grounds. The work is being carried out by a team of forty technical experts from Thailand, who work from bamboo scaffolding high above the temple grounds. They will be using nearly 300 kilograms of gold which has been gifted by the King of Thailand and his people. More than a thousand Thai monks, nuns and lay pilgrims, dressed in traditional white lay pilgrim’s robes, have gathered for the occasion.