Did you know that there is a Large Buddha can be found in New York?
The 37-FOOT-HIGH-BUDDHA sits atop a lotus flower, encircled by 10,000 smaller Buddha statues. His hands- the left index fingers extended into the clenched right in a "knowledge fist" represent the unification of compassion and wisdom.
The Chuang Yen Monastery houses this statue, The largest Buddha in the Western Hemisphere, on their 225 acres in Carmel, New York. With meditation programs in both English and Chinese, the monastery was built and is maintained by the Buddhist Association of the United States. The monastary welcomes visitor to walk around the Seve Jewels lake, meditate in their halls and learn about the principles of Buddhism. Visitor are invited to meditate with the 15 monks and nuns living on the site, and are encouraged to ask questions about the Chinese tradition of Mahayana Buddihism.
To help the guests understand the principles and applications of the religion, the Great Buddha Hall has tables piled high books ranging from "What Buddha Taught" to "Finding Inner Peace". The books are available for visitors to take home.
The Great Budha Hall, completed in 1997, was built around the finished Buddha statue . Photographs of the dedication with Dalai Lama, and of the process of building the artificial marble statue, adorn bulletin boards that also offer information on retreats, camps, classes and special events. Kuan-Yin Hall, adjacent to the Great Buddha hall is used for daily meditaitons, special events and retreats. Housed inside is a porcelain statue of Kuan-Yin Bodhisattva dating back to the Ming Dynasty.