Friday, 23 September 2016

Vishwa Shanti Stupa

Vishwa Shanti Stupa, otherwise known as the World Peace Pagoda of Delhi, shanti meaning peace. This substantial stupa sits within Indraprastha Park not far from the Yamuna river in the NE East of Delhi.

The Indraparastha Park was built in 2004 upon what was reclaimed land that used to be a landfill site on the flood plain of the Yamuna river. It cover 85 acres and includes many landscaped gardens, a food court and amphitheatre. Sitting within this to the north is the gleaming white 30 foot high shanti stupa.........

It was built in joint cooperation with the Shanti Stupa Society and the Delhi Development Association (DDA). Building work began in 2004 but its inauguration ceremony took place on November 13-14 2007 with many dignitaries, most notably the Dalai Lama, who donated Buddhist relics that are interred within its fabric.

There are many peace pagodas built across the world, apparently in 2000 there were 80. Most of these have been built post WWII. They are a symbol of universal peace, 'created to provide peace and to transform peoples minds and hearts' Most of these have been built by the mission Nipponzan Myohoji, founded by the Japanese Buddhist monk the Most Venerable Nichidatsu Fuji (1885-1985). He was inspired after meeting Mahatma Gandhi in 1931 and started building them across the globe from 1947.

You will find 6 stupas in all throughout India and surprisingly 3 in the UK (I didn't know about this) They are situated in Birmingham, Battersea Park, London and Milton Keynes!

I've visited a couple of times now and although its been too hot to enjoy the Park, I've spent about 1/2 hour just climbing the steps bare foot and reacquainting myself with Buddha. He is here in 4 formats as you circle the stupa. Its always a peaceful relaxing moment, even with the busy ring road just a few feet away, you don't seem to notice the traffic somehow. A peaceful pure white building with a gleaming gold finial.

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