The Bodhi Tree also known as Bo and "peepal tree" is a large and very old sacred fig tree located in Bodh Gaya. In religious iconography, the Bodhi Tree is recognizable by its heart-shaped leaves, which are usually prominently displayed.
The Bodhi tree at the Mahabodhi Temple is called the Sri Maha Bodhi. Gautama Buddha attained enlightenment while meditating underneath a Ficus religiosa. According to Buddhist texts the Buddha, meditated without moving from his seat for seven days under this tree. A shrine, called Animisalocana cetiya, was later erected on the spot where he sat.
The spot was used as a shrine even in the lifetime of the Buddha. King Ashoka was most diligent in paying homage to the Bodhi tree, and held a festival every year in its honour in the month of Kattika. His queen, Tissarakkha was jealous of the Tree, and she caused the tree to be killed by means of mandu thorns. The tree, however, grew again, and a great monastery was attached to the Bodhimanda called the Bodhimanda Vihara.
The tree was again cut down by King Pushyamitra Shunga in the 2nd century BC, and by King Shashanka in 600 AD. Every time the tree was destroyed, a new tree was planted at the same place.
However, the tree decayed further and in 1876 the remaining tree was destroyed in a storm. In 1881, Cunningham planted a new Bodhi tree on the same site.! 🌳✨👁🕉🌀🌳