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Thursday, 19-Feb-2009 10:22 Email | Share | Bookmark
Bangkok part 5

The Temple of Dawn
The Temple of Dawn
The Temple of Dawn
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
The Temple of the Reclining Buddha
The Temple of the Reclining Buddha
The Temple of the Reclining Buddha
 
The Temple of the Reclining Buddha
The Temple of the Reclining Buddha
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Wat Arun (Thai: วัดอรุณ, Temple of the Dawn) is a Buddhist temple (wat) in the Bangkok Yai district of Bangkok, Thailand, on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River. The full name of the temple is Wat Arunratchawararam Ratchaworamahavihara (วัดอรุณราชวรารามราชวรมหาวิหาร).

Architecture
The outstanding feature of Wat Arun is its central prang (Khmer-style tower). It may be named "Temple of the Dawn" because the first light of morning reflects off the surface of the temple with a pearly iridescence. Steep steps lead to the two terraces. The height is reported by different sources as between 66,80 m and 86 m. The corners are surrounded by 4 smaller satellite prangs. The prangs are decorated by seashells and bits of porcelain which had previously been used as ballast by boats coming to Bangkok from China.
The central prang is topped with a seven-pronged trident, referred to by many sources as the "trident of Shiva".
Around the base of the prangs are various figures of ancient Chinese soldiers and animals. Over the second terrace are four statues of the Hindu god Indra riding on Erawan.
At the riverside are 6 pavilions (sala) in Chinese style. The pavilions are made of green granite and contain landing bridges.

Next to the prangs is the Ordination Hall with the Niramitr Buddha image supposedly designed by King Rama II. The front entrance of the Ordination Hall has a roof with a central spire, decorated in coloured ceramic and stuccowork sheated in coloured china. There are 2 demons, or temple guardian figures in front.
History of the temple
The temple was built in the days of Thailand's ancient capital of Ayutthaya and originally known as Wat Makok (The Olive Temple). In the ensuing era when Thonburi was capital, King Taksin changed the name to Wat Chaeng.
The Wat had a brief period as host of the Emerald Buddha, which was moved to Wat Phra Kaew in 1784.

The later King Rama II. changed the name to Wat Arunratchatharam. He restored the temple and enlarged the central prang. The work was finished by King Rama III. King Rama IV gave the temple the present name Wat Arunratchawararam.
As a sign of changing times, Wat Arun officially ordained its first westerner in 2005. Sean Patrick from America.

Mythology
The central prang symbolizes Mount Meru of the Indian cosmology. The satellite prangs are devoted to the wind god Phra Phai.

The demons (Thai: Yaksha) at the entranceway to the ubosot are from the Ramakien. The white figure is named Sahassa Deja and the green one is known as Thotsakan, the Demon Rāvana from Ramayana.




Wat Pho (Thai: วัดโพธิ์), also known as Wat Phra Chetuphon วัดพระเชตุพน) or The Temple of the Reclining Buddha, is a Buddhist temple in Phra Nakhon district, Bangkok, Thailand, located in the Rattanakosin district directly adjacent to the Grand Palace. Its official full name is Wat Phra Chetuphon Vimolmangklararm Rajwaramahaviharn (Thai: วัดพระเชตุพนวิมลมังคลาราม ราชวรมหาวิหาร). The temple is also known as the birthplace of traditional Thai massage.

History
Prior to the temple's founding, the site was a centre of education for traditional Thai medicine, and statues were created showing yoga positions.

During the Rama III restoration, plaques inscribed with medical texts were placed around the temple. These received recognition in the Memory of the World Programme on 21 February 2008, according to Thailand's Government Public Relations Department. The temple was created as a restoration of an earlier temple on the same site, Wat Phodharam, with the work beginning in 1788. The temple was restored and extended in the reign of King Rama III, and was restored again in 1982. In 1962 a school for traditional medicine and massage was established

Description
Wat Pho is the one of the largest and oldest wat in Bangkok (with an area of 50 rai, 80,000 square metres), and is home to more than one thousand Buddha images, as well as one of the largest single Buddha images: the Reclining Buddha (Phra Buddhasaiyas, Thai พระพุทธไสยาสน์). Made as part of Rama III's restoration, the Reclining Buddha is forty-six metres long and fifteen metres high, decorated with gold plating on his body and mother of pearl on his eyes and the soles of his feet. The latter display 108 auspicious scenes in Chinese and Indian styles.

The Wat Pho complex consists of two walled compounds bisected by Soi Chetuphon running east-west. The northern walled compound is where the reclining Buddha and massage school are found. The southern walled compound, Tukgawee, is a working Buddhist monastery with monks in residence and a school.




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