Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Shwe Dagon Pagoda


Shwe Dagon dominates the Yangon skyline.  It sits on a hill, with no tall buildings nearby, hence can be seen from quite a distance.   Legend says it is 2,600 years old.  It is said to be the most sacred pagoda for the Burmese, containing eight strands of hair from Gautama Buddha, and other relics from several other buddhas. 

When I visited on a weekday afternoon, there were a lot of people, but it didn’t feel very crowded, partly because there were quite a bit of space around the central stupa.  There were a lot of intricate carvings and paintings, telling many marvellous stories. 

There were plenty of pious lay people praying at the pagoda.  

And monks, of course. 

Some were bathing the buddha statues. 

The place was kept sparkling clean by an army of sweepers. 

And moppers. 



YTSL said...

Myanmar is one of those places that's long captured my imagination but which I didn't want to go to while Aung San Suu Kyi was under house arrest. Although the political situation there is still not ideal, I may be should start thinking seriously of paying the country a visit -- in which case it looks like a visit to the Shwe Dagon Pagoda must be part of that trip.

StephenC said...

Yes, there are plenty of interesting places there. Just a random walk yields surprising moments, such as monks shopping for flowers, cock fighting, ... Lots of people go to ASSK's place to take photos. Taxi drivers openly talk about their support for the opposition. Teachers talking about education reform.