Friday, March 1, 2019
The Religious Symbolism and Architecture of Angkor Wat and Borobudur
Built by the Khmers between 802 and 1220 AD, the ancient temples of Angkor Wat exist as the remain relics of a historic onlyy and unearthlyly rich city. man many other historical and religious social organizations in Cambodia have disappeared due in part from macrocosm constructed out of vulnerable materials like wood, Angkor Wat still trunk as a symbol of the divinity of its former kings, as wellhead as for the castle itself. Likewise, Indonesias Borodubur temples exist as the single stay structures of the city.The temples of Angkor Wat and Borodubur hold several similarities within computer architecture and symbolism, both being severely invertebrate footd on religious belief. However, different features within both structures, architecturally and symbolically, distinguish and provide insight into the individual cultures. Significance of Hindiism, Astronomy, and cosmogeny In Angkor Wat architecture With Hinduism serving as the prevailing religion of Cambodia, the templ es of Angkor Wat serve as a visual bridge between the terrestrial plane and the religious one.The temples of Ankgor Wat uses architectural features in order represent various appraisals of Hindu Cosmology The walls, moats, important sanctuary, entrances, pyramidal temples and bridges with naga balustrades, and monuments such as the Neak Pean, or Bayon, all contribute to the re-creation of the heavenly realism on kingdom. By re-creating this, Earth and the heavenly world are entwined creating a bond between the ii worlds that allows humanity to flourish. In constructing Angkor Wat to represent religious beliefs, the Khmer people literally reinforced heaven on Earth.By creating a tactile representation of what is believed to have happened in the past, the past becomes more real and more concrete to viewers and believers alike. In order to honor the Hindu God Vishnu, Suryavaram II built Angkor Wat during the ahead of time years of the 12th century, around 1150 B. C. Structural ly, the central building of Angkor Wat is serves as a re-creation of Mount Meru, the mountain that the center of the Jambudvipa within Hindu cosmology as well as being considered the axis of the Earth by the Hindu religion.The central mammoth of a tower represents Mount Meru, and unequivocally faces west instead of east towards the sunrise, as all other temples do. several(prenominal) theories explain why the temple faces west the first theory being that the west is associated with Vishnu. In facing the temple west, the temple continues to serve as a means of honoring Vishnu. The second theory states that King Suryavarman think Angkor Wat to serve as his funerary temple while a the thirdly theory explains that the alignment of the central tower with the sun adds another proportionality to the divinity of the temple.Ankgor Wats architecture does not only exhibit its religious roots, but also displays the importance of astronomy and cosmology. It contains calendrical, historical, and mythological data encoded into its measurements. Because solar movement regulates the position of the bas-reliefs, the architecture exhibits the importance of the sun to the Cambodians. The Cambodians built the structure of Angkor Wat to align directly with the sun during the spring equinox, where the sun can be seen rising over the central tower. Although no concurrent reason exists as to why the sun is so important to the Cambodians, what can be say is that the sun was so significant to the Cambodians, that they not only based their schedule on the solar and lunar cycles, but they constructed their Kings palace, a place of great importance that connects the heavens with Earth, to align with the sun. The vanadium central towers of Ankgor Wat that stand 77 meters tall hold religious moment as well. These five inter-nested rectangular towers represent five peaks of the mountain Meru.Also, the moat ring the central temple that measures 190 meters wide symbolizes the cosmic o cean that existed in the lead the dawn of creation, and the enclosing wall represents the rock encircling the universe. Creating a parry of Mount Meru, enclosing walls as the wall of rock, and the moat filled with weewee as the ocean serves as the essential architectures for the Cambodians to re-create and symbolize their Hindu religious beliefs. Decorative elements through out the towers and galleries present their own characteristics and contact specific needs within the temple.The towers are formed into the shape of the ever-popular white lotus buds, and the galleries are used to expand the many passageways of the temple. Also, the axial galleries within the temple are used to connect several enclosures. Characteristic decorative components of Angkor Wat embroil narrative and historical bas-reliefs, pediments, and devatas. The bas-reliefs located in the gallery of Angkor Wat holds a supererogatory signification for Angkor Wat. The gallery displays heaven and the underworld in which garudas and lions are belongings the celestial palaces.These gerudas indicate that the palaces were floating in heaven, comparing Angkor Wat to the palaces of the Gods. This display thats the idea that Angkor Wat acts as a liason between the world of Heaven and Earth. Because the palace physically remains on earth but spiritually resides within heaven, the palace acts as communal place for believers to gather. The bas-reliefs and pictures did not only serve to beautify the palaces, or depict stories of the past. They hold the important task of transforming the palace into a celestial dwelling or heavenly place.Further evidence to support this image is the fact that many scenes are hidden to the point where they cannot even be seen by the naked eye. This highlights the spirituality of the place, that spirituality is not necessarily tangible or seen. In hiding the bas-reliefs, or making them subtler in the boilers suit construction of the temple, furthers the idea that the palace is not meant to be just a place of beauty, but also a place of divinity. Candi Borobudur Layout Unlike Angkor Wat, Buddhism more heavily influences Borobudur.Built in Indonesia in the 9th century as a saint to Buddha as well as a pilgrimage site for believers, Borobudur consists of six neat chopines topped with four rotary platforms. Nearly 2. 700 relief gameboard and 500 statues of Buddha decorate the temple. Additionally, 72 Buddha statues surround the center of the top platform of the monument. As a pilgrimage site, Pilgrims climb from the bottom of the monument, ascending to the top. While on their voyages, they are said to pass two collar levels of Buddhist cosmology, or three stages of Buddhist enligh hug drugment the Kamadhatu, Ruppadhatu, and Arupadhatu.These levels represent the world of desire, the world of forms and the world of formlessness. Borobudur differs from Angkor Wat in that is constructed as a single, large stupa, with no inside(a) space. It is t he single remaining temple of its kind in Java, and is more than believably intended as a shrine to Buddha, instead of temple or house of worship. Typical Buddhist temples were built with rooms, intended to possess icons Borobudur does not have the same amount of space or rooms to right house icons, suggesting that the purpose of Borobudur differs from the other temples of Java.Various theories exist to explain the purpose tramp Burobudur and architecture. It has been said that Borobudur represents Mt. Meru, that it contains three levels of Buddhist enlightenment, that the round upper terraces were meant to form the base for an enormous stone stupa which contained a precious relic of Gautama Buddha, or that Borobudur was merely a stupa or for initiation rights. Religious Symbolism in Borobudur Architecture Similarly to the uniqueness of Angkor Wat facing the west, Borobudur is unique as well, for it was constructed on a bedrock hill, between two volcanoes, instead of on a plain surface like other temples.Similarly to the Khmer temple, Borobudur also displays several variations of religious significance throughout the architecture. The lotus is prevalent in the architectural and decorative aspects of the shrine. The architecture of Borobudur is similar the demeanor of a lotus and the Buddha statues within Borobudur symbolize the genus Lotus Sutra, which is found in several Mahayana Buddhism texts. Additionally, the four circular platforms located on the top of Borobudur are also considered to embody the leaf of a lotus.The radical of Borobudur measures approximately 118 meters on each side, in the form of a square. Of the ten platforms that make up the structure six are square and the remaining four are circular. The highest platform exhibits seventy-two small bell regulate and decoratively pierced stupas. Statues of Buddha reside within these pierced stupas. When Borobudur is viewed from above, the monument resembles the appearance of a tantric Buddhis t mandala, furthering the representation of the Buddhist cosmology.The division of Borobudur into three parts, the base, body, and top, symbolizing the three stages of what Buddhist cosmology considers the ultimate goal. The base represents the Kamadhatu, the five square platforms the make up the body represent Rupadhatu, and the three circular platforms that compose the top represent Arupadhatu . Similarly, the paths that guide pilgrims to the ultimate goal were designed through sacred Buddhist knowledge, based on Buddhist cosmology. equal to Ankgor Wat, Borobudur possessed direct measurements that possibly indicate calendrical, astronomical and cosmological themes.The exact ratio formula 469 has also been spy in the Pawon and Mendhut, two other neighboring Buddhist temples. The monument further represents cosmology because it can be concluded that the 360 squares that surround the central square of the monument symbolize the 36o degrees of the celestial circle that surrounds t he Earth. However, details of the Buddhist brass details vary from those of Hinduism origins, although the Buddhist systems temples also localise on the idea of a central mountain that represents Meru.