Hong Kong is world famous for its shopping, dazzling night life, and excitedly fast pace. Yet less than an hour away on Lantau Island is fresh air, blue sky and bliss in the form of the world famous Tian-Tan Buddha and an attraction of “Wisdom Walk.” Built atop the highest terrain on Lantau Island, an auspicious opening ceremony of Tian-Tan Buddha was held on November 17, 1993. It’s said that splendid dragon-shaded clouds appeared in the sky on that day. This bronze-made Buddha statue is 115 feet tall (about a 9-story building) and weighs 250 tons. There are 325 small hair buns on the Buddha’s head, and each bun is about the size of an average adult’s face. Each finger is about the height and size of an average adult. More than 10 adults can stand on the palm of the Buddha’s left hand. The visitors need to climb 268 steps to reach the top of hill where the Buddha is sitting. The Buddha is surrounded with 6 bronze Bodhisattvas. There is a big temple opposite the Buddha. And there are 4 Heavenly Kings in the front entrance area. Buddha images are reminders of Gautama Buddha and his teaching. The giant Buddha sits with his right hand raised to shoulder height, palm facing out, in the fearlessness gesture denoting spiritual power. It represents his ability to grant freedom from fears to others. Thus, the Buddha shows reassuring or protecting an approaching person. His left hand gesture signifies “wish-granting,” showing blessing toward the onlooker. The sense of compassion, generosity, wisdom, harmony, balance and beauty conveyed in this colossal Buddha makes it easy to see why the Buddha statue is Hong Kong’s treasure and a very popular place of pilgrimage. Here is my drawing of Tian-Tan Buddha. Tian-Tan means the Temple of Heaven.
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