The Temple of the Tooth: A Sacred Shrine in Sri Lanka
The Temple of the Tooth, also known as the Sri Dalada Maligawa, is a sacred Buddhist temple located in the city of Kandy in Sri Lanka. This temple is considered one of the most important religious sites in Sri Lanka and is a major pilgrimage destination for Buddhists from around the world.
The Temple of the Tooth is so named because it houses a tooth relic of the Buddha, which is believed to have been brought to Sri Lanka from India in the 4th century. The tooth relic has been a symbol of power and sovereignty in Sri Lanka for over a thousand years, and the temple was built to protect and preserve the relic.
The Tooth Relic
The tooth relic is housed in a series of gold caskets, which are displayed in the temple’s inner sanctum. The relic is only shown to the public once a year, during the Kandy Esala Perahera, a procession that takes place in July or August. During the procession, the relic is carried through the streets of Kandy in a specially decorated casket, accompanied by dancers, musicians, and elephants.
Ceremonies and Offerings
The Temple of the Tooth is an active place of worship, and visitors can observe various ceremonies and offerings taking place throughout the day. Devotees come to the temple to make offerings of flowers, incense, and candles, and to participate in rituals and prayers.
Architecture and Design
The Temple of the Tooth is an example of traditional Sri Lankan architecture and design, with intricate carvings, elegant wooden beams, and colorful murals. The temple complex is surrounded by beautiful gardens and courtyards, and visitors can also explore the museum, which displays a collection of Buddhist artifacts and art.
The Temple of the Tooth is one of the few remaining temples in Sri Lanka that has escaped destruction by foreign invasions and colonization. It has survived for over a thousand years and remains an important symbol of Sri Lankan cultural heritage and religious tradition.
The Temple of the Tooth is a must-visit for anyone traveling to Sri Lanka. Whether you are a Buddhist, a history buff, or simply interested in experiencing a unique and fascinating religious site, a visit to the Temple of the Tooth is an unforgettable experience. So, come and witness the rich cultural and spiritual heritage of this sacred shrine in Kandy.
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