A Project for World Peace
Rising from a verdant meadow with a Bodhi tree planted to the west, we are going to build a replica of the holy Mahabodhi temple. This place, where the Buddha attained enlightenment, will inspire all who see it to find refuge in the gentle path of peace and compassion.
As you walk the path from our Great Prayer Wheel to the upper part of our land and you will encounter this venerable stupa, an icon of peace rising from an open meadow. Standing more than thirty feet tall, we will build a replica of the most holy Buddhist pilgrimage site in India.
This stupa will be the central axis in a garden which will offer sites to sit and meditate, thousands of memorial stupas, a garden of flowers, grown as offerings to the Buddha, places to perform prostrations, ponds with places for peaceful travelers to rest and reflect.
Placed among the many holy objects on our land, this will become the central place for gathering. The purpose of this stupa is to serve as inspiration and blessing to all who visit. Simply seeing; making prostrations or circumambulating will be of benefit to all. Dedicated as a place to promote peace, we will have plaques to honor people such as Mother Theresa, Martin Luther King and others who have made great contributions towards creating a more peaceful world.
Stupas are said to promote harmony, prosperity, longevity, good health and peace. They bring blessings to the environment in which they are built, to those who build them, and to those who visit and venerate them. In this way, stupas ensure that the living quality of the Buddhist teachings will always be available.
"It has long been the tradition that wherever the teachings of the Buddha’s have been revered and practiced, communities of followers have built reliquary monuments known in Sanskrit as stupas and as chörtens in Tibetan. And wherever they have been built, they have been regarded as sacred, for like religious images and scriptures, they represent aspects of enlightenment." —His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama
The 100,000 Stupa Project was begun in 2001. For the next eight years extensive architechtural planning and land analysis was done to build the designed 11,000 sq. ft. building. Modeled after Borobudur, it would have had an interior space for display of holy objects and 100,000 stupas on the exterior. After working with architects and consultants, several attempts were made with the local governmental agencies to be granted permission to build the original design on our land. Sadly we were no success (and after lots of pujas and practice). And Lama Zopa’s question turned to “is this practical” here. After some discussion the Stupa project team met in 2010 with Lama Zopa changed the design of the main building according to the advice of Khadro la, healer, oracle and advisor to many Tibetan lamas including Kyabje Zopa Rinpoche and His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
The new building was to be a replica of the 1000 Buddha temple located in Katmandu. This temple in Katmandu is itself a replica of the Mahabodhi Temple in Bodhgaya, with its design altered to fit the space available in the busy city of Katmandu.
This spring Kyabje Zopa Rinpoche and Khadro la visited our center and we were able to meet with them on the stupa construction site. We showed Rinpoche and Khadro la images of the 1000 Buddha Temple photo shopped into the landscape and asked for advice. Khadro la gestured that the stupa needed to be wider (like the original Mahabodhi Temple).
Soon after the meeting with Kyabje Zopa Rinpoche I met privately with Kyabje Zopa Rinpoche to go over mechanical drawings that had been completed by our designer for the construction of the 1000 Buddha temple. The drawings were scaled to fit what we would be permitted to build by the local government agencies. During this meeting Kyabje Zopa Rinpoche made the decision that in accordance to Kharola’s comments and gestures that we should now built an authentic replica of the Mahabodhi temple as is depicted in the above drawing.
Currently we are working with a local building designer to scale and engineer the stupa. We are actively researching ways to build the temple that will inspire all and the source of blessings to all living beings. A visit to Thailand and India to gather information will be made in the next couple of months. From that research we plan to gather needed information of the actual construction methods that we will be able to use to create this detailed beautiful holy object – Denice Macy, Director of LMB, December 22, 2012
is about peace - for the individual beings who come to see it, for the
whole country, for the entire world - for all beings.”
-Lama Zopa Rinpoche
“The stupa, with relics at its heart, is the source of stainless merit...”