For a long time I was told that when the Buddha touched the ground and became enlightened that his hair went up and formed a ball on his head and that that is what we see on the statues. But recently I heard a different story, that they are snails!

That is something that really made my day, but is it true? Are there only snails or did his hair also stand up?

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    Welcome to the site. I think this topic has already been addressed... – ChrisW May 29 '17 at 10:30
  • @ChrisW: Ok, sure, I just didn't find it because I didn't find anything about snails in the potential duplicates... I guess I should have look further. But even after looking at the duplicate post I am still a little unclear on whether they were really snails or not? It seems to be still unknown. Unless I just didn't look closely enough? – user4967 May 29 '17 at 10:34
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    This answer references a blog entry by a Theravada monk to say "no snails". Yinxu's answer is likely to be from a Mahayana perspective, and comments on the symbolism of "108". – ChrisW May 29 '17 at 10:44
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    @ChrisW: Ok, thanks! But when I get enlightened, I want snails! – user4967 May 29 '17 at 10:46