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Tokyo Town Hopes To Attract Tourists Through New 40 Foot Tall Buddha Statue

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The big Buddha club just got a new member.

Located a 90-minute car ride to the west of central Tokyo is Hinode-machi, a rural town of 17,000 which unless you’re an avid hiker or love fall foliage, you’ve probably never heard of. However, Hokōji, a Buddhist Temple in this small town is hoping to change that via their new gigantic Daibutsu  (large Buddha stature).

Shot using a drone

This massive new statue is called the Rokuya Daibutsu in honor of the Japanese name of the deer park where it is said the Buddha first achieved enlightenment. The Rokuya Daibutsu sits atop a 3-meter (9.8 feet) tall lotus pedestal measuring 14-meters (46 feet) across. The statue itself comes in at 12-meters (39.4 feet) tall which is roughly one meter (3.3 feet) taller than the famous Kamakura Daibutsu. By comparison, the Nara Daibutsu, which is one of the most well known Buddha statues n the world, comes in at 15-meters (49.2 feet) tall.

The statue is made of copper alloy and cost over400 million yen (3,784,000 USD) to make. Planning for the statue began five years ago. The idea was proposed by the father of the current head of Hokōji Temple as a way to spread awareness of Buddhism and attract new worshipers.

Using a crane to assemble the head of the Rokuya Daibutsu

The Rokuya Daibutsu was made in multiple pieces at a foundry in Yamagata City, Yamagata Prefecture, some 400 kilometers away from Hinode. Completed pieces were transported to Hinode where they were then assembled into the complete statue.

The Rokuya Daibutsu is scheduled to open to the public on April 11.

Hokōji (宝光寺) Address and Phone
3392 Hirai, Hinode-machi
Nishitama District, Tokyo 190-0182, Japan

Phone: +81 42-597-0031

Source: ANN News, Asahi Shinbun
Featured image: Courtesy of Suindo Corporation (株式会社 翠雲堂). May not be reproduced without permission.
Images: “鎌倉超え”12メートルの大仏 観光名所に期待(18/02/27) (ANN News)

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