The temples of Java

We take the time and first explore on a whole day the temple of Prambanan. In a large green park stands the Hindu Candi Çiva temple, built between 900 and 930 AP. A.D., and many times restored afterwards. The towers erected to the sky symbolize Mt Meru, a sacred mountain in the Himalayas of northern India. Inside these towers, we can observe the statues of the great deities Çiva, Vishnu and Brahma.

For history, two religions clashed in Java in the 9th century: Buddhism and Hinduism. These two religions set up their base in the fertile plain of Yogyakarta, built Prambanan and Borobudur and clashed to have the hand-put on the island. Java was hindouisée. But in the fifteenth century, Islam arrived and its expansion ended Hinduism (which was not the case in nearby Bali).

The next day, we head towards Borobudur, in a box of rice fields and palm trees. The road is long, but it is worth it: Built with 1 600 000 blocks of volcanic stone (from the andesite), it is the largest Buddhist monument in the world!

Again, earthquakes and violent rains have degraded the building that needed restoration to keep its splendor.

One speaks of Borobudur as a "stone mandala", ie that his ascension promotes the spiritual ascension of the believer. We thus pass the sphere of desires, that of appearances, before reaching the sphere of emptiness or spiritual awakening, with its immense hollow stupa, still a symbolic replica of Mt Meru.

Théotime takes great pleasure in looking for Buddha's representations inside the stupas ("Does he still have a head?"), or to observe the various sculptures on the walls to recognize animals. The statues of stone lions still inspire him a fearful fascination, and he likes to go and touch them furtively the claws or teeth, well brave the little man!

Another symbolic of Borobudur that we liked very much and that we share here for the lovers of numerology: Borobudur is made up of 9 terraces. 504 Statues (5 + 0 + 4 = 9), 72 stupas (7 + 2 =…), 108 niches (…) on each side (4 sides, 4×108 = 432. 4 + 3 + 2 = 9…) … And there is no chance, we will always fall back to the number 9, one of the numbers of the celestial spheres.

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