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Bodh Gaya: center of the Buddhist world

Bodhgaya, Eastern India, is where Prince Siddhartha became the enlightened Buddha under the Bodhi tree. This sacred site, home to the Mahabodhi temple and a descendant of the original Bodhi tree, attracts pilgrims worldwide. Buddha's teachings spread across Asia from here, leaving a rich spiritual and artistic legacy. Created by Asian Art Museum.

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Video transcript

but Gaia is one in eastern India associated Buddhism about 2500 years ago it was here under the Bodhi tree close to the present-day mahabodhi temple that the prince named Siddhartha attained enlightenment he became the Buddha the enlightened one he began to teach his wisdom setting in motion beliefs and practices that would spread throughout Asia Bodhgaya is a major pilgrimage site the focus of worship is the Bodhi tree the present tree is a descendant of the original a commemorative stone platform built by the Emperor Ashoka in the 3rd century BCE still stands underneath the boughs of the tree and is covered with offerings the mahabodhi temple was originally built more than 1600 years ago but it has been restored many times since images of the Buddha and other figures can be found in niches covering the walls and in numerous small shrines and stupas that surround the temple these images manifest the Buddha's presence and communicate his teachings although Buddhism declined in India the spiritual and artistic legacy of Bodhgaya spread throughout East and Southeast Asia pilgrims to Bodhgaya took souvenirs home with them such as this small plaque covered with scenes of the life of the Buddha pilgrims and tourists from all over the world still come to boogie different countries have built their own temples monasteries and hotels they accommodate the many visitors to this most sacred site in the Buddhist world you you