All that Gold: Mahamuni Paya

Stopped by the Mahamuni Paya on my way to the ancient cities of Iwa, Sagaing, and Amarapura.

It was my lucky day as there was a procession for the ceremonial hair-cutting ceremony for little boys. It was wonderful seeing the people so beautifully dressed in their formal Burmese clothes.


The children were especially cute.

The Mahamuni is an important place of devotion to the Buddhist Burmese so it was quite crowded and busy. Fortunately, I had a good motorbike driver/guide who would pull me to see and explain going-ons.

At one corner were large bronze sculptures which people were rubbing their hands on and then rubbing their body parts with. I noticed some would rub the legs of what seemed to beca warrior and rub their own legs too. The statues have a colorful history having been taken by the Rhakainkaeng king from the Thais who took it from Angkor Wat of the Khmer.



The centerpiece of the Mahamuni is the giant Buddha covered with gold leaf by devotees. Through the years, it has become thicker with all that gold.


Unfortunately , women can only sit, pray, and stare as they’re not allowed anywhere near it.

A flat screen tv gives you a close-up,though.

Apoarently, gold leaf isn’t only for Buddhas. It’s also used to cover walls. Saw this worker applying the thin sheets to a newly painted arc.

On my way out, bought five small gongs from one of the souvenir shops lining the entrance.

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