A giant Buddha statue, believed to be the largest in the Western world, is set to be unveiled in Brazil later this month in an official Buddhist ceremony at the Zen monastery of Morro da Vargem in the municipality of Ibiraçu, Uruguay. State of Spirit Santo.
Standing 38 meters tall, the same height as the iconic image of Christ the Redeemer, which overlooks the city of Rio de Janeiro – the seated Buddha statue took over a year to complete. It was originally supposed to be unveiled in September 2020, but that was postponed due to technical delays and due to the COVID-19 pandemic to January this year.
Mosteiro Zen Morro da Vargem was the first Zen Buddhist monastery to be established in South America. Founded in 1974 by monk Ryotan Tokuda, the monastery, which sits at an altitude of 350 meters, trains monks in traditional Soto Zen and environmental education. It is located on a 150 hectare site, 140 of which are reserved for forest conservation and reforestation.
The formal eye-opening ritual was performed in the presence of senior Zen priest Minamizawa Zenji in December last year, although due to the pandemic the ceremony was not open to the public but was broadcast live.
“Before it was just a statue, now it’s a statue with a soul,” explained the monastery’s abbot, Daiju Bitti after the ceremony. (Pe na Estrada)
According to local media, an official groundbreaking ceremony is scheduled for August 28 at 10 a.m. local time. The ceremony will be open to the public and will take place in the presence of State Governor Renato Casagrande.
The statue, made of 350 tons of iron, steel and concrete, is expected to become one of Brazil’s biggest tourist attractions. Under normal circumstances, the monastery receives around 1,000 visitors every weekend.
The monastery complex also includes the largest Zen garden in the West and the largest torii —a traditional Japanese door—in the Americas. Fifteen small white Buddha statues sit nearby in meditation, representing the serenity we must seek to maintain in difficult times and the need to be persistent and not give up in the face of life’s obstacles.
Christianity is the most widespread religion in Brazil, according to 2010 census data, and is observed by approximately 88.8% of the population of more than 210 million people, most of whom identify as Catholic. However, Brazil is also home to the third largest Buddhist population in the Americas, after the United States and Canada, with nearly 150 temples spread across the country.
Buddhism was first brought to Brazil in the early 20th century by Japanese immigrants and is considered the largest of all minority religions in the country, with approximately 250,000 followers, including Brazil’s large Japanese-Brazilian community. . The most popular Buddhist traditions are the Japanese schools of Buddhism, including Jodo Shinshu, Nichiren and Zen, although the four major schools of Vajrayana Buddhism – Nyingma, Gelug, Sakya and Kagyu – maintain active centers, including the Khadro Center Ling of Chagdud Tulku Rinpoche in Tres Coroas, Rio Grande do Sul. In recent years, the Chinese Mahayana and Theravada traditions of Southeast Asia have also grown in popularity.
Zen Monastery of Morro da Vargem
Buda gigante em Ibiraçu will be inaugurated no final de agosto; veja a data (A gazette)
Buda gigante was inaugurated during the Cerimônia no Mosteiro de Ibiraçu (Pé na Estrada)
O Buda gigante by Ibiraçu | Brazil (Olhar Budista)
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