Restoring the Buddha Statue to its former glory, as seen in this picture from 2006, has cost the Trust in the vicinity of $12,000. Any contributions are welcome and will benefit the dharma and sangha in New Zealand as well as those who make the donations. These can be deposited into our ASB account 12 3209 0303196 00, please reference donations with 'Buddha Statue restoration'.
Why is the Buddha Statue so important? Aside from the physical aesthetics of the statue, and the obvious relevance of an image of Shakyamuni Buddha the Supreme Teacher, the Buddha Statue benefits the Kagyu lineage in New Zealand by providing a physical representation of the body aspect of the enlightened mind (along with the temple and the stupas which represent the speech and mind respectively). In addition, Buddha statues in general benefit beings who see them by calming and inspiring the mind. Many people also circumabulate the statue to generate merit and accumulate blessings.
As you can see, on the right, the outer plaster coating on the Buddha Statue had deteriorated and had started to flake off allowing water to seep in and lift plaster from the lower part of the statue.
As a consequence the Trust obtained quotes as high as $30,000 to rehabilitate the statue which was beyond the financial means of the Trust and its supporters, so the project was shelved until a coating specialist was found who injectied epoxy resin under the plaster coating without having to deconstruct the statue.
Once the plaster was repaired the entire surface had to be sanded, replastered and sealed with yellow tinted sealant to intensify the colour of the final coat of gold paint.
below left: John helps to mix and keep the paint flowing into the spray gun. below right: The features of the face are being repainted.
And here's the finished work. The Buddha figure, the base and all the details have been exquisitely restored to shine out the glory of the dharma. Doesn't it look magnificent?! Come up and have a look. A consecration ceremony was led by Umzi Karm Tshering and invited sangha on Sunday, 20 May, a new moon and solar eclipse day to re-
Many, many thanks go to all those supporters and benefactors who have so generously contributed their skill, hard work, time and financial support for this special project. Due to you dedication this glorious statue, built to fulfill the wishes of HH 16th Karmapa, will continue to shine brightly for many more years.