Sandamuni PagodaPagoda of Sandamuni
Sandamuni Pagoda in Mandalay is known for its large gold cedi, its hundred marble-engraved shrines and Burma's biggest picture of the Buddha of iron, the Sandamani, after which it is called. Sandamuni, like the Kuthodaw Pagoda near by, is situated at the bottom of Mandalay Mountain with good view of the mountain and its gorge.
This pagoda was erected as a monument to Prince Kanaung, who was assassinated in 1866 by two unlucky King Mindon Min's children, who were not the first in line to become the next king. Sandamuni's corpses and three of his son, who were also slain, were buried on the site of the pagoda.
At the beginning of the 1990s the graves were transferred to a tomb in Mandalay. In 1874 King Mindon Min constructed the chedis on the site of his provisional palace, while the royal palace near by was constructed. Around the pagoda there are 1774 sanctuaries, each with a unique plate of granite.
They are labeled with the Buddha's teaching, comprising Sutta Pitaka, Vinaya Pitaka and Abhidhamma Pitaka (the three cages that make up the Tripitaka), as well as comments and sub-commentaries. Every plate, which is 1. 68 metres high and 1. 07 metres broad, is anchored in a small little cavern called Dhamma ceiling, where Dhamma is the doctrine of Buddha and ceiling is the Myanmar term for ched or stupid.
Sandamuni Pagoda is home to the biggest picture of the Buddha in Burma, the so-called Sandamani picture. This painting was poured in 1802 by Bodawpaya, king of the Konbaung family of Burma. It consists of almost 41,000 lbs of steel and is now coated with a coat of golden. It was relocated from the old capitol Amarapura, a few kilometres southwest of Mandalay, to Mandalay.
This picture in the Bhumisparsha Mandra of "Calling the world to testimony" is anchored in a church. From the palace in Amarapura were also taken 18 sculptures of Arhats which represent the 18 Arhats, the first adherents of the Buddha who were living with the Buddha about 2,500 years ago.
Now they are anchored in smaller Stupa around the pagoda. This pagoda is situated at the bottom of Mandalay Hill in the north of Mandalay, northeast of the Royal Palace and just a few steps from the Kuthodaw Pagoda. Pagoda Sandamuni is open every day from 8 am to 8 pm.