September 23, 2017

Shwedagon Pagoda Great Wonder

Seeing is believing. You are most warmly and cordially welcome to see, observe, respect (people from all over the world) and pay obeisance (if you are Buddhists) to our shrines of Myanmar and getting reassure, refresh, regenerate, rejuvenate, relax, revitalize, revive, revivify and rest well under tranquil, peaceful and happy environment. Shrines of Burma (article wrote by DAVID MAURICE (Wunna Kyawhtin U Ohn Ghine- 24/9/1899-28/9/1981) in The Light of the Dhamma, The World Fellowship of Buddhists, Second Conference Issue, Union of Burma Buddha Sasana Council, November 1952) mentioned the following facts about Great Shwedagon Pagoda/The Famous Shwedagon Pagoda: – The first Englishman ever to visit Burma was Ralph Fitch, who in the late fifteen hundreds sailed from the Thames in “the talle shippe Tyger”, the same vessel mentioned by Shakespeare’s witches in Macbeth. For the “Tyger” was indeed wrecked on its voyage to Aleppo and his good Kamma saved Ralph Fitch and eventually brought him home, safe and sound after many adventures including his short but happy sojourn in Burma. Ralph Fitch found in Rangoon a cultured civilisation in which commerce and the arts flourished, and the cleanness and sweetness of all he saw inspired him to write most enthusiastically—so much so that his story published in Hakluyt’s Voyages captured the imagination of all Europe.
He wrote of the mighty Shwedagon Pagoda; “It is the fairest place, as I suppose, that doe bee in all the worlde”. Certainly the Great Shwedagon Pagoda is the oldest and mightiest of Buddhist fanes, and draws pilgrims from near and far to worship at its sacred base and to remember the Great Teachings of the Buddha as they repeat “Anicca, Dukkha, Anatta” “All is Impermanence, a source of discontent, without any unchanging soul or ego”. The ancient stories tell of the trading mission to India of two brothers, Burmese merchants, Tapussa and Bhallika by name, more than 2500 years ago, and of how they met the Buddha just after He had attained his long-sought Enlightenment, and obtained from Him eight hairs of His head to be enshrined in their native town of Okkala (pa), the present day Rangoon (Yangon).
Welcoming in royal manner by the King of Okkalapa on two brothers’ return, though they encountered many difficulties and dangers on their way back and, the Hair Relics of the Buddha were enshrined in a Golden Pagoda. Through the ages this pagoda, the Shwedagon, has been added to until in 1774 (241 years ago) it was raised to its present height of 326 ft. by Sin Phyu Shin, king of Ava. Since the Shwedagon is on a hill overlooking Rangoon, it has a commanding position and dominates the landscape. Rising from the summit of the hill which has been levelled to form a platform about 900 ft. long and 700 ft. wide the Pagoda is surrounded by tazaungs (shelters) which have some of the finest woodcraft and mosaic work existing in the world today.
Each of the gateway/archway, East, South, West, North of Shwedagon Pagoda, has Great Hall (Fane) for paying obeisance to Buddha, Dhamma and Sangha, three jewels for all Buddhists to take refuge. These tazaungs may have as many as five, seven or nine storied roofs some culminating in a spire and hti (umbrella). There are also almost innumerable figures of the Buddha of brass or of alabaster. If the world has but seven wonders, then Shwedagon Pagoda (The Wonder of the World) is not the least of them and there are many even among the non-Buddhists who come from the ends of the earth to see the beauty and romance of almost-fairy architecture, though there are those who, objecting to the Eastern injunction (given also to Moses) “Take off thy shoes, for thou art upon Holy Ground”, do not enter when they find that it is necessary to remove one’s footwear. This prejudice is now happily dying out.
Distinguished Visitors in recent times (1950s period at the time of author’s writing) have expressed their awe and reverence and have used that very phrase “one of the wonders of the world”. With all the reverence and all the wonder inspired by this mighty symbol, one gets also the atmosphere of quiet happiness and tranquil joy that is so peculiarly Buddhist. A few of the many entries in the Visitors’ Book show this.
A dream came true for (Lord) LISOWEL. “My visit to the Shwedagon Pagoda this morning is the fulfilment of a long cherished ambition. Ever since I first heard of the Pagoda many years ago, as one of the world’s supreme art treasures, I have looked forward to the day when its beauty and interest would change from a dream to a reality. Thanks to the kindness and courtesy of the Trustees of the Pagoda my dream has now come true. The Pagoda, in all its grace and dignity, has witnessed many dramatic events in Burma’s long and illustrious history. I am happy to think that it will so soon witness the achievement by Burma of complete national independence, and the beginning of a new and glorious chapter in the career of a great people. May Britain and Burma always walk together as friends and equals.” 7th September 1947. (Lord) LISTOWEL.
Great Britain and Burma (Myanmar) can share together the appreciation of the world’s treasures. The members of the United Kingdom Defence Mission to Burma were shown round the Pagoda on 24th August 1947. We have looked forward since our arrival in Burma to paying this visit not only because the Pagoda is, as a work of art, one of the wonders of the world, but also because of its particular significance as a symbol of Burmese unity. The peoples of Great Britain and Burma will find mutual understanding easier to achieve if they can share together the appreciation of the world’s treasures. We have felt this morning particularly, understanding of the aspirations and ideals of a united and independent Burma. 24th August 1947.” JOHN FREEMAN, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, War Office.
One of the great wonders and one of the best of all is Shwedagon Pagoda in this Universe.  “I have been told of the Shwedagon Pagoda. I have read of the Shwedagon Pagoda. Now I have seen the Shwedagon Pagoda, and that is the best of all. I am deeply grateful to the Trustees of the Pagoda for their kind welcome to me and my wife and members of my staff. I regard it as a good omen that one of my first acts after my arrival in Rangoon as the High Commissioner of the United Kingdom has been to visit this wonderful shrine. 1st December 1947. JAMES BOWKER.
No two in the world, Shwedagon Pagoda is Great Wonder in this Planet. “The dignity and splendour of what I have seen this evening I find difficult to express in words. What is even more striking is the atmosphere of peace and tranquillity. A visit to such surroundings is an inspiration and a source of spiritual strength and sustenance. My visit will remain one of the most cherished memories of my life.” 6th January 1948. ARTHUR HENDERSON, Secretary of State.
Purification, Preservation, Protection, Promotion, Propagation and Perpetuation of Buddha Sasana by the people of Myanmar makes the Shwedagon Pagoda long lasting and ever growing, free from all dangers and disasters.  Fire, earthquakes, the ravages of time and the inclemency of the weather and, during the last war, British and Japanese bombs, have menaced the Shwedagon Pagoda but still it gleams majestically towards the sky and Ralph Fitch’s words are still as true “ It is, as I suppose, the fairest place that doe bee in all the Worlde.”
Architectural works of Shwedagon Pagoda is highly praised by the world. Except for pagodas in of Bagan era, the architectural works of the Shwedagon Pagoda has been praised by the world as OUTSTANDING WONDERS OF THE WORLD, in other words, the renowned architectural works of Shwedagon Pagoda is highly praised by the world. The name Shwedagon is derived from the Theingoktara (singuttara) hillock and Dagon capital. Theingoktara in Sanskrit means auspicious golden hill from that shwe is added to ti -gon town and putting it into one word, makes it Shwedagon Pagoda. It is also called Dagon Hair Relic Pagoda or Four Relics Auspicious Shwedagon Pagoda.
Going together to Gaya, Giving food together to The Buddha, Getting sacred hair relics together from Awakend One, Coming together to Dagon and Gaining the title of the most outstanding Upasakas (disciples) from the Buddha, and Welcoming back royally by the Okkalapa King, Taphoktha and Balikka, the two bothers on arriving back at their hometown, they offered the whole of Ramanya Division to the reigning King the Okkalapa King. The Okkalapa King and Taphoktha and Balikka brothers put the Buddhas’ relics and built a small 44 – taung (66 feet) pagoda with Buddha’s hair relics enshrined in it for the public to pay obeisance to this wonder. That was a brief history of how the Shwedagon came into existence and on the full moon day of Myanmar calendar month of Tabaung, Wednesday at 103 Maha Era (BC), the Shwedagon Pagoda was successfully built. At the reign of Queen Shin Saw Pu, the height was raised to 302ft.
Over 2558 years of its establishment, the Shwedagon Pagoda had suffered from several natural disasters. In 1768, the earthquake struck and the body part of the bell shape body was totally destroyed. So, King Ahlaung Phayar, the Innwa King, son of U Aung Zeya and the Sinphyushin King renovated, repaired and rebuilt it. And the umbrella, the new Htidaw was hoisted and the height was extended to 326 ft., which can be seen to date. Moreover on the pagoda at northeast point, a pagoda with the height of about 150 feet was first established with small zedis, encircling bud-like ornament above the vane of Shwedagon Pagoda.
Development and improvement work of Shwedagon Pagoda has been continuing from time to time since its establishment 2558 years ago.  The Shwedagon’s several points relating to the present day are also seen in the 1485 AD Shwedagon inscription of King Dhammaceti. These include the renovation of zedi, the propagation of the Såsanå, and the sustenance of the Sangha. The inscription also refers to the Mon heritage of Suvannabhummi. “With a break in the tradition of those knowing that the sacred hairs of the Lord Buddha were enshrined in the Shwedagon, men no longer worshipped there and the pagoda became overgrown with trees and shrubs.
Always be alert with vigilance and strive on with diligence to prevent, protect and preserve the Shwedagon Pagoda from dangers and damages. Two hundred and thirty-six years after the Parinibbana (Final Release) of the Lord Buddha (308 BC), the monks Sona and Uttara arrived in Suvvanabhumi (Thaton) to propagate the Religion. When the Religion was established and an Order of Monks set up, King Srimasoka requested the two Elders thus: ‘O Venerable Monks, we have received the Dhamma (Law) and the Sangha (Order). Can you not provide us with the Buddha to worship?’ The two Elders then showed the King the Shwedagon Pagoda in which the sacred hairs of the Lord Buddha were enshrined. King Srimasoka cleared the overgrowth and built a pagoda and an enclosing pavilion with a tiered pyramidal roof. From that time onwards the people of the Mon country went to worship there.” The Mon lands at that time included the area of present-day Yangon with the earliest recorded reconstruction at the Shwedagon Pagoda being the 1372 AD work of King Banya Oo of Hanthawaddy. Repairs and renovations have been carried out over the centuries and continue today. In recent years these have included refurbishment of the main four Ar-yon-khan Tazaung mentioned above, as well as other tazaungs and images on the platform. There has also been refurbishment of staircases, and installation of lifts and escalators.
Golden pagodas are seen all over Myanmar, that’s why Myanmar is called the land of Golden Pagodas by almost all visitors around the Globe. In the final waxing days of Tagu 1361ME before Thingyan, a new Htidaw was hoisted at the Shwedagon Pagoda. Although the zedi height of 43 feet remains the same, the use of stainless steel for the tiers and supports made the new structure heavier, with a total weight of approximately 5 tons. Of this, over half a ton is gold. An inscription is mounted on the Htidaw itself, with other inscribed donatory plaques placed on the zidi bell below the band. In the period surrounding the raising of new Htidaw, a Jade Image, a Gold Replica or likeness of the Shwedagon Pagoda, and a Htidaw zedi were installed on the platform. The pure gold (thant-sin-shwe) likeness of the Shwedagon Pagoda is currently housed in a tazaung on the southeast (Tuesday) corner of the platform.
Real amazing is the Jade Image which is 45 inches high, with a gold weight of 90 pounds and decorated with 242 diamonds, 1895 rubies, 701 jades and 400 sapphires. The image of the Buddha made of jade (Kyauk-sein) was consecrated shortly before the hoisting of the new Htidaw. Carved from a single piece of stone, it is 30 inches high, simply presented with a gold band of 18 ticals (10 oz) decorated with 9 diamonds and 91 rubies. The Jade Image took nine years to carve and weighs 750 kilograms. It was installed in the Chinese Merited Association Tazaung on the southwest (Saturday) corner of the platform. The Jade Image faces east, so that while paying homage, one’s back is never to the main stupa. The Htidaw Zedi is the only new zedi to be built on the platform in many years. It is located midway between the east (Monday) and northeast (Sunday) corners of the platform, close to the earlier Htidaw Zedi of King Mindon and the 1775 AD Htidaw of King Sin-Phyu-Shin.
Efforts of the Kings in the past and various Governments to maintain the Great Shwedagon Pagoda have been strenuous and concerted over 2558 years. Here The Shwe Dagon Pagoda: Design and Dimensions: is noteworthy. The height of the pagoda is 326 feet (or 99.4 meters), which includes the hti (umbrella, crown) and its highest point, the “diamond bud” (seinbu), which is a small sphere encrusted with diamonds and other precious stones. The 7-tiered wrought iron hti contributed to the stupa by King Mindon in 1871 weighed 1.25 tons and was 33 feet high. It was joined to the brick stupa by an iron shaft and was supported by iron struts resting upon a brass capital on top of the “banana bud,” which is part of the stupa. In 1999, it was replaced by a new stainless steel hti, under the sponsorship of the State Peace and Development Council. Although of approximately the same dimensions as Mindon’s hti, it weighs four times as much, 5 tons, including a quarter ton of gold. (Details can be seen in the article about “The Shwedagon of Four Buddhas’ Relics” by Sao Htun Hmat Win, The Light of the Dhamma, Vol II No.2 (3.9.82) Department of Religious Affairs, Sirimangala KabaAye Hill, Rangoon, Burma)
All the designs of the Great Shwedagon Pagoda is unique and may be different from other parts of the world because the designs are based on genuine Myanmar Classical Ancient Architecture. The various levels or bands of the stupa have distinct names, starting from bottom to top: the plinth (elevation: 6.5 meters), 2 sets of terraces of square and octagonal shape (highest elevation: 27 meters), 5 round bands (highest elevation: 34 meters), the “bell” (kyi-gwe) which is decorated with floral motifs (highest elevation: 47 meters), the “twisted turban” mouldings (highest elevation: 61 meters), the “lotus” (highest elevation: 70 meters) and the “banana bud” (highest elevation, 86 meters). Both at its base and higher levels, the stupa is solid. It is covered by gold leaf and, on higher elevations, gold plates. Every four or five years, the gold covering the exterior of the pagoda is repaired and renewed.  The plinth lies 21 feet (6.5 meters) above the platform of the pagoda, which is roughly rectangular in shape and 14.0 acres (5.6 hectares) in area. Major structures on the platform include the four tazaungs or devotional halls at the cardinal points of the compass containing images of the four Buddhas whose relics are stored in the stupa, the Naung Daw Gyi (Golden Elder) Pagoda, and a replica of India’s Mahabodhi Temple are also need to be observed. (See Moore, Elizabeth.  “Text and New Contexts,” Moore, Elizabeth. et al. Shwedagon, and Win Pe, U. Shwe Dagon).
Three of the other figures date to the lifetime of the Buddha Gautama: Ashin Ananda who assisted Him; Ashin Anuruddha, said to have arrived in Suwannabhummi (Thaton) to initiate the Hair Relic Thathana (Sasana) tradition, and Ashin Gawunpati who requested the Buddha to visit Suwannabhummi and accompanied him on his journey. Chronologically, the next figure commemorates the start of the Pariyatti Såsanå by Maha Kassapa, convenor of the 1st Buddhist Synod in the year after the Buddha’s demise. There is then a gap until the 4th century BC with the depiction of images of Moggala Putta Tissa who convened the 3rd Buddhist Synod in 307 BC under the patronage of King Asoka as well as the figures of Ashin Sona and Uttara who traditionally came to Suwannabhummi to restore and revitalise the Buddhist Såsanå. Some six hundred years later, in the 4th Century AD, is the image of Ashin Buddhagosa who brought the three Pitakas (Baskets) to Myanmar.
Over 2558 years of its establishment, the Shwedagon Pagoda had suffered from several natural disasters. In 1768, the earthquake struck and the body part of the bell shape body was totally destroyed. So, King Ahlaung Phayar, the Innwa King, son of U Aung Zeya and the Sinphyushin King renovated, repaired and rebuilt it. And the umbrella, the new Htidaw was hoisted and the height was extended to 326 ft., which can be seen to date. Moreover on the pagoda at northeast point, a pagoda with the height of about 150 feet was first established with small zedis, encircling bud-like ornament above the vane of Shwedagon Pagoda.
Development and improvement work of Shwedagon Pagoda has been continuing from time to time since its establishment 2558 years ago.  The Shwedagon’s several points relating to the present day are also seen in the 1485 AD Shwedagon inscription of King Dhammaceti. These include the renovation of zedi, the propagation of the Såsanå, and the sustenance of the Sangha. The inscription also refers to the Mon heritage of Suvannabhummi. “With a break in the tradition of those knowing that the sacred hairs of the Lord Buddha were enshrined in the Shwedagon, men no longer worshipped there and the pagoda became overgrown with trees and shrubs.
Always be alert with vigilance and strive on with diligence to prevent, protect and preserve the Shwedagon Pagoda from dangers and damages. Two hundred and thirty-six years after the Parinibbana (Final Release) of the Lord Buddha (308 BC), the monks Sona and Uttara arrived in Suvvanabhumi (Thaton) to propagate the Religion. When the Religion was established and an Order of Monks set up, King Srimasoka requested the two Elders thus: ‘O Venerable Monks, we have received the Dhamma (Law) and the Sangha (Order). Can you not provide us with the Buddha to worship?’ The two Elders then showed the King the Shwedagon Pagoda in which the sacred hairs of the Lord Buddha were enshrined. King Srimasoka cleared the overgrowth and built a pagoda and an enclosing pavilion with a tiered pyramidal roof. From that time onwards the people of the Mon country went to worship there.” The Mon lands at that time included the area of present-day Yangon with the earliest recorded reconstruction at the Shwedagon Pagoda being the 1372 AD work of King Banya Oo of Hanthawaddy. Repairs and renovations have been carried out over the centuries and continue today. In recent years these have included refurbishment of the main four Ar-yon-khan Tazaung mentioned above, as well as other tazaungs and images on the platform. There has also been refurbishment of staircases, and installation of lifts and escalators.
Golden pagodas are seen all over Myanmar, that’s why Myanmar is called the land of Golden Pagodas by almost all visitors around the Globe. In the final waxing days of Tagu 1361ME before Thingyan, a new Htidaw was hoisted at the Shwedagon Pagoda. Although the zedi height of 43 feet remains the same, the use of stainless steel for the tiers and supports made the new structure heavier, with a total weight of approximately 5 tons. Of this, over half a ton is gold. An inscription is mounted on the Htidaw itself, with other inscribed donatory plaques placed on the zidi bell below the band. In the period surrounding the raising of new Htidaw, a Jade Image, a Gold Replica or likeness of the Shwedagon Pagoda, and a Htidaw zedi were installed on the platform. The pure gold (thant-sin-shwe) likeness of the Shwedagon Pagoda is currently housed in a tazaung on the southeast (Tuesday) corner of the platform.
Real amazing is the Jade Image which is 45 inches high, with a gold weight of 90 pounds and decorated with 242 diamonds, 1895 rubies, 701 jades and 400 sapphires. The image of the Buddha made of jade (Kyauk-sein) was consecrated shortly before the hoisting of the new Htidaw. Carved from a single piece of stone, it is 30 inches high, simply presented with a gold band of 18 ticals (10 oz) decorated with 9 diamonds and 91 rubies. The Jade Image took nine years to carve and weighs 750 kilograms. It was installed in the Chinese Merited Association Tazaung on the southwest (Saturday) corner of the platform. The Jade Image faces east, so that while paying homage, one’s back is never to the main stupa. The Htidaw Zedi is the only new zedi to be built on the platform in many years. It is located midway between the east (Monday) and northeast (Sunday) corners of the platform, close to the earlier Htidaw Zedi of King Mindon and the 1775 AD Htidaw of King Sin-Phyu-Shin.
Efforts of the Kings in the past and various Governments to maintain the Great Shwedagon Pagoda have been strenuous and concerted over 2558 years. Here The Shwe Dagon Pagoda: Design and Dimensions: is noteworthy. The height of the pagoda is 326 feet (or 99.4 meters), which includes the hti (umbrella, crown) and its highest point, the “diamond bud” (seinbu), which is a small sphere encrusted with diamonds and other precious stones. The 7-tiered wrought iron hti contributed to the stupa by King Mindon in 1871 weighed 1.25 tons and was 33 feet high. It was joined to the brick stupa by an iron shaft and was supported by iron struts resting upon a brass capital on top of the “banana bud,” which is part of the stupa. In 1999, it was replaced by a new stainless steel hti, under the sponsorship of the State Peace and Development Council. Although of approximately the same dimensions as Mindon’s hti, it weighs four times as much, 5 tons, including a quarter ton of gold. (Details can be seen in the article about “The Shwedagon of Four Buddhas’ Relics” by Sao Htun Hmat Win, The Light of the Dhamma, Vol II No.2 (3.9.82) Department of Religious Affairs, Sirimangala KabaAye Hill, Rangoon, Burma)
All the designs of the Great Shwedagon Pagoda is unique and may be different from other parts of the world because the designs are based on genuine Myanmar Classical Ancient Architecture. The various levels or bands of the stupa have distinct names, starting from bottom to top: the plinth (elevation: 6.5 meters), 2 sets of terraces of square and octagonal shape (highest elevation: 27 meters), 5 round bands (highest elevation: 34 meters), the “bell” (kyi-gwe) which is decorated with floral motifs (highest elevation: 47 meters), the “twisted turban” mouldings (highest elevation: 61 meters), the “lotus” (highest elevation: 70 meters) and the “banana bud” (highest elevation, 86 meters). Both at its base and higher levels, the stupa is solid. It is covered by gold leaf and, on higher elevations, gold plates. Every four or five years, the gold covering the exterior of the pagoda is repaired and renewed.  The plinth lies 21 feet (6.5 meters) above the platform of the pagoda, which is roughly rectangular in shape and 14.0 acres (5.6 hectares) in area. Major structures on the platform include the four tazaungs or devotional halls at the cardinal points of the compass containing images of the four Buddhas whose relics are stored in the stupa, the Naung Daw Gyi (Golden Elder) Pagoda, and a replica of India’s Mahabodhi Temple are also need to be observed. (See Moore, Elizabeth.  “Text and New Contexts,” Moore, Elizabeth. et al. Shwedagon, and Win Pe, U. Shwe Dagon).
Three of the other figures date to the lifetime of the Buddha Gautama: Ashin Ananda who assisted Him; Ashin Anuruddha, said to have arrived in Suwannabhummi (Thaton) to initiate the Hair Relic Thathana (Sasana) tradition, and Ashin Gawunpati who requested the Buddha to visit Suwannabhummi and accompanied him on his journey. Chronologically, the next figure commemorates the start of the Pariyatti Såsanå by Maha Kassapa, convenor of the 1st Buddhist Synod in the year after the Buddha’s demise. There is then a gap until the 4th century BC with the depiction of images of Moggala Putta Tissa who convened the 3rd Buddhist Synod in 307 BC under the patronage of King Asoka as well as the figures of Ashin Sona and Uttara who traditionally came to Suwannabhummi to restore and revitalise the Buddhist Såsanå. Some six hundred years later, in the 4th Century AD, is the image of Ashin Buddhagosa who brought the three Pitakas (Baskets) to Myanmar.
“Wonderful, indeed, it is to subdue the mind, so difficult to subdue, ever swift, and seizing whatever it desires. A tamed mind brings happiness.” (Dhammapada Verse No. 35). In the 11th Century AD, is the figure of Ashin Arahan who began his propagation of Theravada Buddhism in Bagan in 1056 AD. Thus the images span a time period of more than1500 years from the 6th century BC to the 11th century AD. They include not only those associated with the commencement of Theravada teachings in the Mon State but the transmission of these teachings from the southern to the central part of the country, from the Mon State to the later capital of Bagan. (Text and New Contexts: Shwedagon and Kyaikhtiyoe today Elizabeth Moore, University of London “Texts and Contexts” December 2001 Conference, Universities’ Historical Research Centre, Yangon University)
Outlook of Myanmar Classical Architect from “The Ancestral Stupas of Shwedagon” point of view is briefly mentioned below. The Shwedagon is the most glorious and the most famous pagoda in Myanmar, which is situated at Yangon, the port city of Myanmar. A stupa 326 feet high on top of a hillock is completed coated with thin sheets of real gold plates, brilliantly shinning in the sun light. According to the old Shwedagon Pagoda chronicle, it is said that, this stupa existed since the very earlier time, contemporary to that of the Lord Buddha, enshrining the holy hair relic of the Buddha, which were given to two merchant brothers of Uk-kalar-pa by the Lord Buddha; a few days after his Enlightenment. Not only the hair relic of Gautama Buddha, but also the other holy relics, such as the robe, the walking stick and the water filter of the previous Buddhas, Kaku-sanna, Kona-gamana and Kasapa were enshrined inside the relic chamber of Shwedagon Pagoda.
Nothing is impossible to one with 4 Ws (will (mind), work-hard (effort), wish-to-do and wisdom) (4 Bases of Success) to build back better. There is a will there is a way for advancement, betterment, comfort, development and enhancement (ABCDE).  Prevention is better than cure. The most inner stupa, built by king Uk-Kalar-Pa and two merchant brothers, was only 66 feet high. The stupa was frequently enlarged, at least seven times, by the later Mon Traditional architect and individual archaeologist, Mandalay, Myanmar. The Ancestral Stupas of Shwedagon were found and placed on the outer platform of Shwedagon Pagoda. Kings, including the Queen Shin Saw Pu, raised up to the height of 302 feet by encasing a new one on top of another. The Shwedagon Pagoda was situated at the lower Myanmar country, mostly ruled by the Mon Kings, many kings from the upper Myanmar also used to renovate the Shwedagon Pagoda, when the stupa was damaged or collapsed by earth quakes.
Donation (Generosity-Saga) of general public from all walks of life is crucial and of paramount importance for building and renovation of pagodas in Myanmar. King Bayint Naung from Hamsawady, and his son King Nanda, Anauk-bet-lun-min from Innwa, King Alaung Paya from Shwebo and his descendant kings of Kone-Baung dynasty up to the King Min Don, used to renovate the pagoda by donating colossal bells and by putting new golden umbrellas, decorated with thousands of valuable precious stones. Out of three colossal bronze bells, donated by the kings, the bell of king Dhamacedi was lost and later only two bells found, the bell of king Thar-yar-wady and the bell of King Singu-min.
Existing architectural design of Shwedagon Pagoda is very popular among a lot of monks and Buddhist people, not only in Myanmar, but also in foreign countries, who copy the replica stupas of Shwedagon Pagoda in various sizes, starting from a small model to the life-sized copy of the Shwedagon Pagoda. (Paper presented at the International Buddhist Conference, held in Brastaji, Indonesia, October 2010 by U Win Maung (Tampawady), Classical Architect, Myanmar:- Source: website).
Recognized by all visitors from around the world and local visitors, the Shwedagon Pagoda will surely fulfil your wishes, tranquillity, peace and happiness. There are some outstanding wonders of the pagodas built or placed on the Shwedagon. (1). The Padamya Myetshin Tawagu (Wish Fulfilled) Ruby Buddha, situated directly on the east of upper reliquary; (2). the Weitzar Zaw Gyi at Saturday corner; (3). At the northwest corner of the Pagoda is the wish-fulfilled Shinsaw Pu Buddha Image; (4). Shin-Ma-Htee Buddha image on north side of Naung Taw-Gyi Pagoda; (5). The Shin-Iz-Za Gaw-Na Buddha inside the praying hall, (6) the Hsan-Taw-twin Buddha image facing the prayer hall on the Pagoda’s northern side is the place where the Buddha’s hair relic were washed before they were enshrined and the pagoda built over them;(7). On the eastern (in between East and North) side you will come across and find the Boe Boe Aung’s wishful Buddha Image; (8). There is also Let-Pet-Let (La-ba-mu-ni) Buddha image in the prayer hall on the eastern side; (9). Pya Dar Shin Buddha image and it is believed that all these (9) Buddha images are very holy obsessing inner power and thus these places are designated as nine holy and auspicious places that can fulfil one’s wish and therefore, it is named as the (9) wonders of the Shwedagon Pagoda. On the pagoda platform there are (9) Victorious Land Plots; (9) Main Determination Places; (9) Mindful Unique Statues; and (9) Must Know Places (like bells, inscriptions, footprint, Bodhi tree etc.) on Shwedagon Pagoda too. On the platform of the Pagoda nearby Chan-Thar-Gyi Tazaung adjacent to North Gateway, there is the victorious land plot or Aung-Myay is situated and to the east of Aung-Myay there is Padauk Waing Image and this image turned its eyes towards persons paying homage to it which is really fascinating. The Shwedagon is the most pious and most wonderful pagoda and most renown. Because of systematic architectural work in accordance with right ratios in different parts of the Pagoda, even though it is very high, it is firm and elegant therefore, just by sitting in front of this huge Pagoda and gazing at it, you will get the pleasure and feeling that you never can find anywhere. The traditional Myanmar architectural works of arts stands proof of how Myanmar build this great wonder of the world which is internationally known throughout the Globe, in other words, the Shwedagon Pagoda is a unique wonder of the world. (from websites)

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