On the occasion of attending the launching event of Bphone 3 in Myanmar, I had the opportunity to visit the golden pagoda of Shwedagon, the most sacred Buddhist structure of this country and had very impressive photos by the camera of Bphone, the high-end smartphone Made in Vietnam.
The Shwedagon Golden Pagoda is a cultural heritage of mankind, the pride of Myanmar. This is one of the most marvelous religious structures in the world, can be compared with Cambodia's Angkor Wat, Tibet's Potala palace, Indonesia’s Borobudur temple, etc. – the very famous wonders of Southeast Asia.
The Shwedagon Pagoda is covered with 90 tons of golden plates and encrusted with 89,994 precious gemstones. The top is a diamond sphere with the height of 56 cm and the diameter of 56 cm, encrusted with 4351 diamonds. Every 5 years, the pagoda is maintained once.
In backlit conditions, directly towards the sun, Bphone 3 can fully reproduce the shadows which are the towers and the highlights which are the sun and clouds
Located on the top of Singuttara hill of ancient capital Yangon (Myanmar), the Shwedagon Golden Pagoda is about 20-30m higher than the road. Standing here you can see the view of Yangon city. The pagoda ground has rectangular shape with the main pagoda tower of approximately 100 meters high. Around the main tower are hundreds of small pagodas, temples and shrines with thousands of Buddha statues, mascots and decorative patterns.
According to legend, the Shwedagon Pagoda was constructed more than 2,600 years ago. According to tradition, Tapussa and Bhallika — two merchant brothers from the north of Singuttara Hill met the Lord Gautama Buddha during his lifetime and received eight of the Buddha's hairs. The brothers returned to Burma and, with the help of the local ruler, King Okkalapa, found Singuttara Hill to worship the hairs. This place then is Shwedagon pagoda.
Foreign tourists can buy tickets at the south gate while Myanmar people enter the pagoda for free from the remaining three gates (East, West and North). The ticket price to Shwedagon Pagoda is 8,000 Kyat (more than USD 5). At each gate, there is a couple of Chinthe, the giant lion gods guarding the entrance.
Chinthe is one of Myanmar's legendary mascots, not only appearing in temples or religious buildings, but also in daily life culture, printed on Kyat coins of this country. This creature also symbolizes the royal family, the most noble things, playing an important role as the white elephants in the Burmese culture.
Before entering the pagoda ground, visitors will pass through a hall of 200 meters long with many splendid golden plated pillars. Visitors will also have to remove shoes, sandals, socks and go barefoot.
The traditional costume of Myanmar is longyi. Myanmar men wear this outfit in all activities from schooling, working or in daily life.
Pillars in the main hall have many Buddhist images and eye-catching motifs.
Because of the height, visitors need to go through 2 floors of stairs to reach the main hall. The pagoda also has the elevator to make it more convenient for visitors. To enter the pagoda, visitors must go through security checkpoints.
Bphone's Auto White Balance (AWB) is good. Whether outdoors or indoors, the colors of golden plated details are kept true to reality.
From anywhere in the city, you can also see the top of the pagoda. The Myanmar government has issued the regulation that buildings in Yangon city must not exceed the height of Shwedagon Pagoda (about 160 m including the ground).
The entire pagoda has golden-plated Buddhist towers with sophisticated architecture, but the giant main tower remains the center of attention for every believer and tourist.
Myanmar people often worship and pray in the main shrines. They do not use incense and do not prepare so many offerings.
The surrounding small towers all have Buddha statues inside with the couple of lion and snake gods Naga guarding the entrance. These are places where rituals can pray. The pagoda has 8 statues in 8 directions symbolizing 7 days of the week. Each statue takes the form of a different creature and the statue for pray depends on the day of your birth, then you can use holy water to water that creature to pray for luck.
In addition to praying in the main hall, people often pray in the pagoda ground, praying in front of Buddha statues in the surrounding small towers.
White elephants, the most sacred symbol of Myanmar, represent power, greatness as well as ambition for an absolute power of the ruling elite in this country.
Many old stories are carved on the walls around the main tower
Myanmar people go on pilgrimage around the afternoon. They wear traditional costumes and prepare simple offerings.
The towers and the roofs in the blue sky bring a solemn feeling to the sacred land of Myanmar.
The Buddha statue of Chan - Thar - Gyi, the largest statue of Shwedagon Golden Pagoda, is located in the northwest. Everyone visiting here believes that every praying before the Buddha will become a reality.
In addition, in Shwedagon Pagoda there are many Buddha statues lying in a relaxed and peaceful manner. In the halls of the pagoda, the people can sleep, rest and chat.
Shwedagon has been restored many times due to damages from natural disasters and wars. Through many earthquakes in 1769, in early 20th century and a big fire in 1931, etc. Shwedagon Pagoda still stands on top of the hill. The pagoda is considered a symbol of national unity, of national identity.
According to VnReview