Architecture of Shanti Stupa
The overall structure of the Shanti Stupa is in the shape of a dome and the construction of the stupa was assisted by Fuji Guruji. The tourists visiting can also spot a number of stupas, chaityas as well as pillars whose foundation was laid by King Ashoka. There also exist a number of edicts that display King Ashoka's intention to promote joy, peace and contentment all through the nation. And over the edicts, one might come across a rock cut elephant that is considered to be the earliest Buddhist sculpture in Odisha. Though the stone elephant showcases a fine sense of form and movement, only visible portion is the elephant’s foreparts. This type of sculpture is considered to be one of the few remains of Mauryan art.
In the vicinity of the Shanti Stupa, there lays a monastery named as the Saddharma Vihar Monastery, which is much visited by the Buddhist devotees. And at a short distance from the Shanti Stupa, one can find the temple of Dhavaleshwar that was renovated in the year 1972 and is much frequented by Hindu as well as Buddhist devotees.
Near the Shanti Stupa one can also spot the Buddha footprints as well as the Bodhi tree over the stone panels. Over the panels, there is the image of Emperor Ashoka laying down his sword of war in front of Lord Buddha signifying that he had given up the idea of war and has finally accepted a life of Ahimsa in the form of Buddhism after the Kalinga War. After witnessing the horrors of battle and the water of the Daya River turning red with the blood of the many deceased after the war, enabled Ashoka to realize the magnitude of terror associated with war. Thus, he completely gave up on war and made Dhauligiri an important centre of Buddhist activities. The Shanti Stupa is a symbol of peace and prosperity for the future generations to come.
Visiting Information on Shanti Stupa
The nearest airport to the Shanti Stupa is the Biju Patnaik International Airport of Bhubaneswar at a distance of 14 km and the nearest railway station is at Bhubaneswar at a mere distance of 13.3 km from the stupa.