The carvings of the semi circular stone slab were the same in every sandakada pahana. A half lotus was carved in the centre, which was enclosed by several concentric bands. The first band from the half lotus is decorated with a procession of swans, followed by a band with an intricate foliage design known as liyavel (Creeper) which represents desire. The third band has carvings of four animals; elephants, lions, horses, and bulls. These four animals follow each other in a procession symbolising the four noble truths (Chathurarya sathya) or the four stages in life: birth, old age, disease and death. The fourth and outermost band contains a carving of flames, usually interpreted as representing the never ending cycle of life and the pains of passion that the people are experiencing.