Tuesday, February 17, 2015

New Stūpa at Buddhavana (Ayer-Pathri)

Light of Buddha DhammaFoundation International (LBDFI) in its efforts to revitalize the lesser known but very sacred places associated with the Buddha in Bihar have created a stūpa near the Buddha cave at village ayer-pathri in Gaya district. The stūpa is blessed by US based Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche.

Most of the focus from government and non-government agencies towards development and promotion of the Buddhist heritage in Bihar is currently limited to the prominent sites like Bodhgaya, Rajgir, Nalanda and Vaishali.  While, many other prominent sites like Jethian, Juafardih, Ayer-pathri, Parwati etc associated with the sublime wandering of the Buddha are not getting the attention that they being associated with the Buddha deserves. 

In recent years many international Buddhist Institutions have evinced interest in revitalizing the sacred Buddhist traces in remote villages. Nava Nalanda Mahavihara (NNM) under its Revival of Ancient Buddhist Pilgrimage Project (RABPB) is creating awareness among the Buddhist institutions worldwide and facilitating revitalization of prominent sites associated with the Buddha in remote villages of Bihar. Ayer-pathri has been identified with Buddhavana, a place associated with the sublime wandering of the Buddha as mentioned by 7th CE Chinese monk-scholar Xuanzang.  Venerable Sik Sau Chi from Miu Fat Buddhist Monastery, Hong Kong visited Ayer-pathri last year and was moved by way the local communities of Ayer-pathri have come together and with their limited resources are trying to conserve the sacred remains scattered all around the village.  Venerable Sik Sau has extended financial help to the community institution at Ayer-pathri for creation of access to the sacred Buddha cave. Need not mention, the community of Ayer-pathri are elated that their efforts being appreciated and complemented by generous endowment from the Buddhist visitors from all over the World. 
Ricardo Lamy Freund, the architect who created many stūpas to mark the Buddha’s footsteps was overwhelmed by the support of the community of Jethian valley.  The entire Jethian valley is replete with sacred traces associated with the Buddha and NNM in collaboration with the LBDFI is currently working on a long-term plan to develop and promote the sanctity of the Jethian valley. The conceiving of the 13km Jethian-Rajgir Dhamma Walkorganized on 13th December, 2014 was one such initiative to promote tangible and intangible heritage of Jethian valley. Following this Dhamma Walk,Department of Tourism, Government of Bihar also organized a Heritage Walk alongthe same Buddha Path on 10th January, 2015.

The Telegraph reports
A view of new Stūpa near Buddhavana

Read: Discovery of Buddhavana
Read: Awareness Walk at Ayer Pathri (Buddhavana)
Read: Safeguarding of Sculptures at Ayer-Pathri (Buddhavana)

The Community support

The Making of the stupa

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