Int’l Buddhist Conference to turn Borobudur into center for studies

Jakarta (ANTARA) – The Religious Affairs Ministry is holding the International Buddhist Conference of Indonesia at Borobudur Temple, Magelang, Central Java, in order to transform it into a hub for Buddhist studies and as a source of inspiration.

“The International Buddhist Conference of Indonesia provides a momentum to turn Borobudur Temple into a center for studies and inspiration for us all in building a new civilization,” Special Staff to the Minister of Religious Affairs for Media and Communications Wibowo Prasetyo noted in a statement received here, Friday.

The international conference, themed “Encountering the Sacred: Borobudur as A Site of Pilgrimage and Tourism for the Buddhist World,” is held under the cooperation of the ministry and the Indonesian Buddhist Universities Association.

The commitment was stipulated in the memorandum of understanding between four ministers and two governors, signed in February 2022.

Prasetyo expressed optimism that the temple would not only be admired for its beauty and architecture but also be developed as a source of inspiration and for its spiritual attracting force. He noted that for developing it as a tourist attraction, it was necessary to focus on the element of education as the main value that should be conveyed to visitors. Thus, tourists can gain more meaningful travel experiences.

Prasetyo noted that Borobudur Temple was built as a symbol of the majesty of Buddhism. Several studies have found that Buddhism, which has long been growing and developing in Indonesia, values Buddhist teachings as outlined in the reliefs of the Borobudur Temple.

Hence, he said, it would not be an exaggeration to call Borobudur Temple a lesson from the teachings of Nusantara Buddhism.

“It is on this basis that Buddhists regard Borobudur Temple as a holy place that is worth a visit,” he affirmed. 

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