By continuing your visit to this site, you accept the use of cookies. They ensure the proper functioning of our services, analytics tools and display of relevant ads. Learn more about cookies and control them

Not yet registered? Create a OverBlog!

Create my blog

Kathmandu's Great Stupa: The facts

Bodhnath Stupa in Kathmandu is a great Tibetan monument, impressive in its simplicity. Its association with Tibet can be traced to 1959 when Tibetans fled their country following the unsuccessful uprising against the Chinese invaders. These refugees have used the stupa as a rallying point and it remains one of the few places on Earth where Tibetan culture is so accessible.

It’s believed that the first stupa was built on the site in the 600s after Songtsän Gampo, founder of the Tibetan Empire, was converted to Buddhism by his wives, Nepali princess Bhrikuti and Wencheng Konjo from China. Dome The most noticeable feature of the 36 metre high stupa is its giant hemispherical dome – known as the Kumbha – which is made of an off-white colour containing traces of green moss. You also have the equally eye-catching ‘harmika’ bedecked with the Buddha’s all-seeing, red-rimmed blue eyes. Wall A low wall, embedded with prayer wheels, surrounds three mandala-shaped plinths of decreasing size upon which the dome is elevated. Each platform is linked to the next by several flights of stairs - this whole base is said to symbolise Earth. From the top of the centre of the dome (which resembles a downward-facing bowl and symbolises water) rises a gold, pyramid-shaped object. Base The square, flat base of this object is the 'harmika'. It features a nose in the form of a question mark and a large pair of red-rimmed, blue eyes, above which is located a strip of multi-coloured material. The eyes are those of Buddha; the question mark (or, more accurately, the Nepalese character for number 1) in the place where a nose should be symbolises unity and represents the way to reach enlightenment. The small third eye represents Buddha wisdom. Spire The gold, pyramid-shaped spire which sits atop the 'harmika', is tapered in the same manner as Giza's pyramids, with blocks rising upwards. These are, in fact, the 13 golden steps which represent the 13 different mental stages which lead to Nirvana. This spire symbolises fire. Umbrella On top of the spire sits a crown-like object, with all the intricate detail you would expect to see on a monarch's head. This is known as the umbrella or parasol and symbolises air. Another strip of material conceals the underpart of the umbrella - the dominant colour of this material is a rich lemon yellow; on top of it are painted thinner strips of red, white and blue.

Same category articles Architecture

An architect's guide to the hip roof

An architect's guide to the hip roof

In modern times, if you happen to see bungalows and cottages, you will notice that the majority of them will be fitted with a 'Hipped roof' or a 'Hip roof'. This is because this style of roofing tends to evoke both comfort and practicality. Here follows a brief guide to this pretty architectural construction.
How to choose an architectural firm

How to choose an architectural firm

This article lists a number of tips that one needs to consider when choosing an architectural firm that can handle a building project successfully. The considerations range from legal aspects, financial arrangements, previous experience to social relations and many other details. This article is a guide to choosing an architectural firm.
Pre-engineered buildings: The facts

Pre-engineered buildings: The facts

Pre-engineered buildings allow a large part of the construction activity to be carried out off-site, thus offering an economic solution by cutting down the project duration.
How to see criminal records for free

How to see criminal records for free

You will be able to search criminal records for free online, and this information can be found in many ways. If you would like to see if an employee has a criminal history, you can find this information when searching through databases such as criminal record checks. Overtime, the world has become a crime-ridden place, and there are many people that have been affected by crime in one way or another.