Mahabodhi Temple - Gaya, the famous world heritage site is a major Buddhist temple, where Lord Buddha is said to attain his enlightenment. Literally, this temple means Great Awakening Temple, which is situated at the distance of 96 kilometers from Patna, the capital city Bihar. You can site this temple at Bodh Gaya, which is historically and culturally very important. Thousands of Buddhist pilgrims from all over frequent this place to offer their devotion.
The temple is dedicated to Siddhartha Gautama, the Buddha and is placed next to the world famous Bodhi Tree. In the Pali canon, this place is referred to ad Bodhimanda. The Bodhimanda Vihara close by is an equally important religious site. Related to the Mahabodhi Temple in Gaya, there are several legends, which are common among the people.
The Bodhi tree that is close to the temple is said to be the naval of the earth, according to the Jatakas. This place is considered to be pure and holy because of the weight of the Buddha's attainment. According to the legend, the Bodhi tree cropped up on the day when Buddha was born.
Mahabodhi Temple has a remarkable architectural structure. The imposing structure of the temple is built of brick entirely. It is the ancient brick structure in the whole of eastern India. This reflects the architectural excellence of the artisans of the period. The influential architectural traditions are worth envy.
The main tower of the Mahabodhi temple is 55 meters tall. The main tower underwent renovation during the 19th century. This tower is bounded by four smaller towers, which are also raised in the same style. Strong stone railings surround the temple entirely and are 2 meters high on all sides. These stone railings are said to be created out of two distinct types of materials, which include sandstone and granite. Sandstone railings are the older ones and have clear signs of it. These railings depict various scenes from the mythology. Images of flowers, eagles and other shrines are engraved on the railings.
Mahabodhi Temple BodhGaya, one of the major monuments is now managed by the government of Bihar. The temple management committee looks after the well being of the temple and takes proper care of this impressive structure. This temple has been counted as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the year 2002.