Stupa Mingun Paya
Myanmar, Sagaing Region

The Mingun Paya stupa is the world's largest unfinished stupa, located in the central part of Myanmar, on the left bank of the Irrawaddy River, in the city of Mingun, 11 kilometers northwest of Mandalay. King Bodapaya began the construction of the stupa in 1791. It was originally planned that the height of Mingun Paya would be 150 meters. The ruler hoped to build the world's largest stupa and thus perpetuate his name. Bodapaya personally chose a place for her on the banks of the Irrawaddy River, drove thousands of prisoners of war and local residents for the construction, raised funds all over the country - they imposed additional duties on people. The monarch ordered the organization of an observation post for himself to personally supervise the construction of the temple. By 1813, when construction stopped, the stupa was 49 meters high. According to one version, the work was stopped due to the prediction of astrologers that as soon as the stupa is built, the king will die, according to another - due to lack of funds. Nevertheless, the stupa Mingun Paya did “immortalize” the king - the people began to call her Bodawpaya's Folly (Stupidity Bodapaya). After the death of the monarch in 1819, work did not resume, and the earthquake of 1839 caused significant damage to the unfinished structure - huge cracks went along the entire facade. Entrances were laid on the four sides of the stupa, which never opened access to the sanctuary, in one of them a niche was already equipped today and a Buddha statue was installed. A stone staircase of 174 steps leads to the summit of Mingun Paya. Due to the accident of the object, a sign has been installed at its foot warning of danger and informing that climbing to the stupa is prohibited. Even the unfinished Mingun Paya is striking in its size, and you can see how the world's largest stupa should look like by looking at its smaller model - Pondaw Paya, located next to the original.

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