In January of this year (2017), we ordered four Buddha statues in Japan for the Great Smoky Mountains Peace Pagoda. Each statue will have a different mudra or hand position, expressing a sacred action. They will face the cardinal directions: north, south, east and west and, since molds are right now being made, our task for the fall work party was to begin to create the space -- Buddha niches -- where these statues will be enshrined. These statues will stand about 15 feet tall including the base.
We had help come from as near as Cosby and as far as Japan. The pour was successful and forms started going up for the next eight feet of the Peace Pagoda. The winter months mean a lull in construction, but work will resume in February. Please come and see the progress!
Friends new and old worked hard throughout the two weeks, mixing concrete, moving heavy block, weeding the gardening, drawing, painting , carving stone .... you never know what work you'll find at the Peace Pagoda! Also, many friends brought food, cooked meals and encouraging words. All of that was very welcome!
Many hands were involved in completing the railway for the second walkway in two weeks, fast work and beautifully done.