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Sanchi Stupa, Sanchi Stupa at Madhya Pradesh India
Sanchi Stupa: Stupas are memorials which are mostly built at the religious places. These stupas generally contain relics. Sanchi Stupa is located in the Raisen district in the state of Madhya Pradesh. It is located on a distance of around 46 kilometers from the capital of Madhya Pradesh, Bhopal. A great number of Buddhist structures exist in the area which was created over a period of time. The stupas are highly relevant to Buddhism. Stupas were the place where Buddhist monasteries were built. The stupas were located away from the town as Buddhist practices required peace but at the same time it must be close to the city as well because the Buddhist used to go for begging in the town.

Architectural design of Stupa: The stupas show the Buddhist architecture in its growth and decay for a period encompassing 9 centuries from 3rd century to 12th century AD. King Ashoka, the great king of India in the ancient times built many stupas all across India. The stupa of Sanchi is the most prominent one. It has a magnificent architectural design. The Sanchi stupas are a world heritage site. The Stupas are big hemispherical domes. It has a central chamber. In the chamber, the relics of Buddha are placed. The gateways of Sanchi stupas are very noticeable for the fact that they contain depictions from the life of Buddha. The gateways of the stupas attract a lot of attention. They are beautifully carved and they depict incidents from life of Lord Buddha.

Symbolism of Stupas: The stupas characteristics the Buddhist India. Stupas became a representation of Buddha. In the earlier times, Buddhist did not represent Buddha directly. They used symbols, for example their footprints. The stupas became a symbol of Buddha later on especially it is a symbol of release from the cycle of birth and death. The design of stupas helps it presenting as a cosmic symbol. Its hemispherical shape presents the shape of the world. The square pedestal supports the stupas and four cardinal points are aligned with it. It symbolizes that the earth and heaven support each other. The stupas represent the axis of the earth. There are other symbolism present in the stupas in the world which tells the unity and interdependence of world and heaven.

Tourism: The stupas attract the tourists from world over. The unique design and the symbolism fascinate everyone.

How to Reach: Bhopal is the nearest airport, approx 46 km far. The nearest railway station is at Vidisha, approximately 10 km from Sanchi Stupa. Direct bus services are also available from Bhopal, Vidisha and Indore.

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