A Throne for The Giant Buddha Statue
Updated on 4/27/2018
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A variety heritages that reflects the glory and splendor of the past scattered across Nusantara (the archipelago). One of the rests of the past greatness is Mendut Temple located about 3 km east of Borobudur Temple. Kayumwungan inscriptions found in Karangtengah mentioned that Mendut Temple was built by King Indra of Syailendra Dynasty. Rectangular temple with multistoried roofs decorated small stupas were built earlier than Pawon Temple and Borobudur Temple which are located in on straight line. Different from Borobudur Temple that facing the rising sun, Mendut Temple entrance faces westward.
In the morning, when YogYES visited the temple, they saw some female high school students and foreign tourists climbing the stairs of the temple. From the distance, Mendut Temple looks graceful and sturdy on its temple foot as tall as 3.70m. Arrived at the yard, YogYES walked around the foot of the temple and found some relief panels which tell about the bird and turtle, monkey and manyar bird, Brahmana dan crab, as well as a number of other fables. At a glimpse, the reliefs that describe Jataka story give a moral message for all those who visit Mendut Temple. Up to the body of the temple, YogYES found 8 reliefs of Bodhisattva with a variety of hand attitudes with much bigger size than the panel reliefs in Borobudur Temple.
Stepped into the chamber of the temple, fragrant scent of flowers mingled with the aroma of incense could be felt clearly. Three 3-meter-high statues illuminated with golden light welcomed YogYES. Large statues in the temple room are statue of Avalokitesvara, and a statue of Bodhisattva Vajrapani. Dyani Buddha Cakyamuni statue is located in the middle sitting with both feet down and the hand attitude turning the wheel of dharma. Being carved out of stone with high accuracy makes the three statues look elegant and dashing. In front of Buddha statue, there are flowers, hiolo, and hio.
Being satisfied enjoying the beauty of Mendut Temple and its giant statues, YogYES left the temple gate passing a row of souvenirs stalls. Not far from the temple, there is a Buddhist monastery which is quiet and open to public. Lotus flowers blooming in the pond and a number of stupas lining in a row decorate the entrance of Buddhist monastery. Every night starting at 19:00 - 20:00, the place is used for chanting ritual or meditation conducted by listening to music and singing. You don't have to be Buddhist, anyone can follow chanting ritual. However, unfortunately, when YogYES visited the Buddhist monastery at night, the chanting ritual was just ended. YogYES started to leave Buddhist monastery and Mendut Temple which are standing gloriously in the midst of darkness.
Photography JAYA TRI HARTONO