Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Pagoda at Shwedagon Temple

Walking barefoot (no shoes allowed) up the long stairway to the temple, we were treated to a beautiful, active scene. Dominating the large facilities was a massive golden bell-shaped pagoda. According to the back of our foreigners entrance ticket, the structure is 326 feet in height - a far difference from the original one of 66 feet, built around 2,500 years ago to house hairs given to two Burmese brothers by the Buddha himself, later to also include relics of other Buddhas. The pride of the Yangon people, the Shwedagon Pagoda was lavishly decorated with 3,154 gold bells in the “Hti" (umbrella) on the top, along with 79,569 diamonds and other precious stones at the very top. I guess devotees would just have to appreciate such precious adoration from a distance, never personally laying eyes on them.

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