Сабарагамува Маха Саман Девале
Sabaragamuwa Maha Saman Devale расположен в очаровательном и красивом районе, не далее 2,5 км от маршрута Ратнапура-Панадура. Его помещения расположены на берегу Калу, одной из самых известных рек Шри-Ланки. Храмы во имя бога Сумана Самана (бога Самана) были основаны после правления Полоннарувы. Первый храм был построен на Пике Адама, и, как «Сатхара Девале», четыре храма были собраны в четырех направлениях: Сабарагамува Маха Саман Девале с запада, Махиянгана Саман Девале с востока, Болтумбе Саман Девале с юга и Дараниягала Саман Девале с севера. В эпоху Дамбадении министр благородного эрудита царя Паракрамабаху по имени «Арьякамадевайо» приехал в Ратнапуру за драгоценными камнями и поклялся Саману Девале построить пагоду с трехэтажным особняком, если он сможет хранить драгоценные камни.
Deity Saman is considered one of the guardian gods of Sri Lanka, particularly in the region of Rathnapura and its surroundings in the Sabaragamuwa province. According to the ancient chronicle of Sri Lanka, the Mahavamsa, Saman was a district administrator during Buddha's visit to the island. It is said that Saman attained the first level of enlightenment, Sotapanna, at the end of Buddha's sermon. After his passing, he started to be revered as a god or deity by the people.
The origin of the Maha Saman Devalaya dates back to ancient times. After Saman's demise, his clan of Deva built a shrine in his honour. In the Anuradhapura era, a temple called Saparagama Viharaya was on the same premises. Monks from this temple even attended the opening ceremony of King Dutugamunu's Ruwanwelisaya. The present shrine is believed to have been built in 1270 AD by Aryakamadeva, a court minister during the Dambadeniya era. King Parakramabahu II provided patronage, and later, King Parakramabahu IV of the Kotte era further supported the shrine.
One of the significant events held at the Maha Saman Devalaya is the Esala Perahara, or the Procession of the Tooth Relic. During King Parakramabahu VI's reign, when the Tooth Relic was transferred to Delgamuwa Raja Maha Vihara, the shrine hosted this procession for 11 years. Later, under King Rajasinghe, the Saman Perahara merged with the Esala Perahara. Since then, the Maha Saman Devalaya has hoisted the Esala Perahara annually in August-September. The procession showcases cultural items, dances from different regions of Sri Lanka, and beautifully adorned elephants.
The history of the Ratnapura area and its association with temples goes back to King Dutugemunu of the Anuradhapura Kingdom. However, the more recent history begins during the Dambadeniya period. Aryakamadeva, a court minister, vowed to gemming and built the first devalaya dedicated to God Saman at Ratnapura after a successful gem mining expedition. Although influenced by Hindu culture, the devalaya has remained a Buddhist place of worship.
Restoration by King Keerthi Sri Rajasinghe
The arrival of the Portuguese in Sri Lanka significantly impacted many Buddhist temples, including the Maha Saman Devalaya. In 1505, the Portuguese landed in Sri Lanka through the Galle Port. They destroyed and looted temples on their march towards Sitawaka, including the Delgamuwa Raja Maha Viharaya, Ratnapura Maha Saman Devalaya, and Pothgul Viharaya. However, with the downfall of the Sitawaka kingdom, King Keerthi Sri Rajasinghe recaptured Ratnapura, demolished the church and Portuguese fort, and built the current Maha Saman Devalaya on the site.
The Maha Saman Devalaya comprises two platforms, which can be accessed through vahalkadas on the east and south sides. A flight of steps on the eastern side leads from the lower platform to the upper platform. The prakara walls surrounding the platform are topped with tiles. Opposite the flight of steps, there is the Santi module, a pillared structure with dwarfs on either side. The devala premises also house the ancient Pattini Devala. The shrine is known for its simple yet captivating architecture, made primarily of clay.
Within the Maha Saman Devalaya premises, there are several significant artifacts. At the end of the digging is a three-storied structure known as the palace. From a distance, it resembles a dagoba. The vihara, located on a high stereobate, is surrounded by verandas and adorned with ancient paintings. Another notable artifact is a sculptured stone dating back to the Portuguese period. It depicts the Portuguese General Simao Pinnao with a brandished sword trampling a Sinhalese soldier. The stone also bears a Portuguese inscription describing the general.
Часто задаваемые вопросы
1 Is photography allowed inside the Maha Saman Devalaya?
- Yes, photography is generally allowed inside the devalaya premises. However, it is advisable to respect the sanctity of the place and be mindful of other worshippers.
2 Are there any restrictions for visitors during the Esala Perahara?
- During the Esala Perahara, certain areas may have restricted access to ensure the smooth flow of the procession. Therefore, visitors are advised to follow the instructions of the shrine authorities and cooperate with the security arrangements.
3 Can I visit the Maha Saman Devalaya throughout the year?
- Yes, the Maha Saman Devalaya is open for worshippers and visitors yearly. However, it is recommended to check the temple's official website or contact the shrine's management for any temporary closures or special events.
4 Are there any accommodation options near the Maha Saman Devalaya?
- Ratnapura offers various accommodation options, including hotels, guesthouses, and homestays, to suit different budgets. It is advisable to book in advance, especially during peak tourist seasons or festival periods.
5 Is there an entrance fee to visit the Maha Saman Devalaya?
- No, there is no entrance fee to visit the Maha Saman Devalaya. However, visitors are encouraged to make voluntary donations to support the maintenance and preservation of the temple.