Intl Saturdays 47: The Golden Reclining Buddha at Wat Pho

I may have seen endless number of Buddha statues, but this one was sheer magnificence! It’s not just the golden colour which gives it an air of regality, but it’s also the massive size, the intricate paintings depicting stories around its walls, the carvings on the bed on which the Buddha is reclining. Behind the statue, the are earthern pots in which people keep dropping coins which adds an element of divine sound to the whole temple. You can just look at the Buddha in nothing but awe.

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Ciao

Intl Saturdays 26: Wat Arun: Temple of the Dawn

As promised, here are the photographs from within the Wat Arun complex. This temple looked markedly different in appearance as compared to other Wat’s i had seen till then in Bangkok. There were no elaborate wavy sort of roofs around the complex, no excessive use of the golden colour on the structure and no sort of sanctum sanctorum so to speak. On reading up on the temple in its complex learned that the architecture is Khmer, which is of Cambodian origin. 
Wat Arun is a blend of Khmer and Thai architecture and commemorates the the Indian god of dawn Aruna – ah the amalgamation of cultures! One thing that is conspicuous about Wat Arun is the intricate detailing on the main structure – called as ‘Prang’ – and also the surrounding four structures. You will notice that a lot of the material used to adorn the sculptures and the temple exteriors is broken piece of glazed porcelain. 

The temple has these insanely vertiginous stairs leading upto the third terrace which has Lord Indra or as he’s popularly known in this part of the world Erawan riding on a multi-headed elephant on all the four sides. These stairs may look normal from the ground up, but as you ascend you realise that it is quite a steep climb and you will not dare to climb without holding on tightly onto the side railings. 

Like i mentioned above, the main ‘prang’ of the temple is surrounded by four smaller prangs. As you are climbing up the main prang and enter the third terrace from where you can get a beautiful view of this temple town and the Chao Phraya river, you hear a pleasant and repititive sound. You can’t realise the source immediately, but if you stare hard at the top portion of the picture, you will notice some golden coloured leaf-shaped structures. They are in fact windchimes which add an element of sound thereby taking the spiritual experience to a whole new level. A zoomed in image is attached below. 

The temple-guards of Oriental origins are found around the complex and with fine liveries at that.

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Ciao

Intl Saturdays 25: Glimpses – Wat Arun

As you are crossing the Chao Phraya river in Bangkok to go Old Bangkok which houses the kings palace and a lot of temples also known as Wat’s, you come across these wonderfully architectured temples that take you back in time. This is what Wat Arun looked like as I was heading towards Old Bangkok. We shall go in next week.

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Intl Saturdays 12: The Temple Guard

While walking through the temples or Wats around Old Bangkok, you will come across a lot of these fierce looking temple guardians. I do not remember much about the significance of these figures, but i could definitely relate them to the Chinese warrior figures i had seen in the past. (Sorry, but this Thailand trip is a blur right now, except for some photographs that i have. Next time, if i get a chance to go there, i will be more thorough with my research;)

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Ciao

Intl Saturdays 8: Long-Tail

Long tail boats are quite ubiquitous in Thailand. On the way to Old Bangkok which houses all the major temples, you will come across many of these colourful boats on the Chao Phraya river. Crossing this river while going towards those temple complexes, you can see the change from the glitzy and hedonistic Bangkok to the more traditional Old Bangkok.

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Ciao