Leshan Giant Buddha
Leshan Giant Buddha is a huge statue which is carved into the side of Mount Lingyun. The Giant Buddha is about 71 meters high and 24 meters wide. The head is 14.7 meters long and 10 meters wide with total 1021 buns of hair on it, and his toenail can accommodate a seated person. Each eyebrow is 18 feet long. The instep, which is 8.5 meters wide, can accommodate 100 people. The toe is large enough to accommodate a dinner table. Taller by 17 meters than the standing Buddha in Afghanistan, the Leshan Giant Buddha is the tallest and largest Buddha in the world. A local saying says, "The Mountain is a Buddha, the Buddha is a Mountain".
The statue depicts a seated Maitreya Buddha with his hands resting on his knees. Maitreya is the future Buddha, who will appear to preach the dharma when the teachings of Gautama Buddha have faded away. The construction began in 713 AD during the Tang Dynasty and was completed in 803 AD.
As the platforms inside the scenic spot are steep, taking a boat is a better way for tourists who are not good at climbing. Tourists must wait in a queue and pass the Giant Buddha one-by-one. Taking a boat to look up at the Giant Buddha is highly recommended in peak tourist season (July-October).
Several drainage passages are hidden in the Buddha's hair, collar, chest, and holes in the back of his ears and chest, prevent the Buddha from serious erosion and weathering. He has been lovingly maintained on a regular basis throughout his 1,200-year history, however moss does grow on the statue.
I updated this article on January 14, 2013
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