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Vietnam to have world's largest sandstone statue of Maitreya Buddha

The world's largest sandstone statue of Maitreya Buddha will be officially sanctified at Ba Den Mountain in the southern province of Tay Ninh on Jan. 28. This will be Vietnam's largest spiritual cultural event, with the participation of over 500 Buddhist monks and nuns from the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha.

The sanctification ceremony for the great Maitreya Buddha statue at Ba Den Mountain on January 28th, 2024 (December 18th, Year of the Water Cat) will be the largest-scale spiritual cultural event ever held on Ba Den Mountain. More than 500 superior Buddhist monks, monks and nuns from the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha, as well as thousands of Buddhists and tourists from around the world, will attend the event, which will include numerous sacred rituals.


On this occasion, more than 20,000 flower garlands and coloured lanterns bearing wishes handwritten by Buddhists and tourists will be lit on top of the mountain to honour the enshrinement of the world's largest sandstone statue of Maitreya Bodhisattva. This will be the most spectacular and magical night of flower garlands and coloured lanterns ever held on the top of the sacred Ba Den Mountain.

At the sanctification ceremony of the great Maitreya Buddha statue, Buddhists and tourists not only immerse themselves in the solemn atmosphere of the statue's enshrinement ceremony, but also participate in a variety of meaningful spiritual activities in the first days of spring such as drawing lucky cards or tying red strings to pray for a prosperous and peaceful new year.

More than 20,000 flower garlands and coloured lanterns will be lit during the Maitreya Buddha Statue Enshrinement Ceremony. Photo: Nguyen Minh Tu

The giant Maitreya Buddha statue, located at an altitude of over 900m on the top of Ba Den Mountain, has a height of 36 meters, a maximum width of 45m, a surface area of 4,651m2, and a weight of 5,112 tons. The statue was shaped by a special method unprecedented in Vietnam: assembled from 6,688 natural sandstone pieces inspired by terraced fields. The Great Maitreya Buddha Statue at Ba Den Mountain is the world's largest sandstone Maitreya Buddha Statue when compared to other Maitreya Buddha statues created from stone in terms of height and weight.

The great Maitreya Buddha statue, crafted in a sitting position on an overflowing waterfall with a gentle face, a delighted smile, a corpulent appearance, a rosary around the neck, eyes facing the East where the sun rises as if looking into the future, has become a symbol of joy and happiness on top of the sacred Ba Den Mountain.

In Buddhist culture, Maitreya is regarded as the Buddha of the future. According to legend, this Bodhisattva's greatest joy is transforming human sadness, anger and stress into joy and happiness. Thus, Maitreya Buddha is also known as the Laughing Buddha. It is believed that Maitreya Buddha's inner smile is so powerful that it always shines on his gentle and joyful face.

Panorama of Ba Den Mountain peak. Photo: Nguyen Minh Tu

Wherever Maitreya Buddha goes, there is happiness, joy, peace and good fortune. Therefore, the sanctification ceremony of the great Maitreya Buddha statue on the top of Ba Den Mountain became an extremely meaningful spiritual and cultural event for the most sacred mountain in the South. For Buddhists, the pilgrimage to Ba Den Mountain to worship Maitreya Bodhisattva will be a journey to find the land of joy, where they will be free of all worries and find perfect happiness.

The sanctification ceremony is also an opportunity for Buddhists and tourists to admire the Wishing Bridge - a special spiritual bridge where tourists can worship the Maitreya Buddha statue while enjoying panoramic views of the delta and the vast Dau Tieng Lake from above. Behind and surrounding the Maitreya Bodhisattva statue is Asia's tallest giant artificial waterfall, standing 35 meters tall and creating a majestic and magical scene on the top of Ba Den Mountain.

Standing under the waterfall, walking on the Wishing Bridge, and worshiping the statue of Maitreya Bodhisattva - the Buddha who represents sympathetic joy and equanimity and smiles happily - tourists will embark on a journey to find joy and true happiness.

Ba Pagoda system on sacred Ba Den Mountain. Photo: Sun World Ba Den Mountain

Known as the top pilgrimage destination in the South, Ba Den Mountain is famous for its sacred Ba Pagoda system worshiping Linh Son Thanh Mau (Linh Son Holy Mother) Bodhisattva, with the 300-year-old Linh Son Tien Thach Tu (also known as Buddha Pagoda, Thuong Pagoda) is halfway up the mountain. On the top of the mountain, alongside the majestic statue of Buddha Tay Bo Da Son (Da Son Tay Bon Buddha), the great Maitreya Bodhisattva statue will create a journey of connection and awakening of loving-kindness, compassion, sympathetic joy, and equanimity - the four potential virtues that every person possesses when visiting the sacred mountain of the South.