Friday 18 July 2008

Buddhist Lent Day at Wat Plai Laem

Buddhist Lent Day at Wat Plai Laem

Today it's Buddhist Lent Day or Khao Pansa in Thai, and I thought this would make for a good opportunity to visit the local temple in Plai Laem, just around the corner from our house.

It's interesting to see that the brand new Bot is almost finished with construction, a stark contrast to the state of this Bot one year ago or even in March this year.

Since the Monks stay for three months inside the temple grounds, candle wax is used to enlighten the Monks during their 'journey'.

Lots of local and not so local people who are on Samui visit the Temples around the island and make merit and give gifts to the Monks. This happens all around Thailand. Here a small group of merit makers are together with a local Monk. Note the big 'money tree' on the right hand side.

An older Bot on the premises doesn't look that great from the outside, but once you enter inside, spectacular wall paintings surround you, left, right, in the middle and above you!

Khun Jarit Humdonming, artist of this temple, spent more than three years adding finer details to the external parts of the temple. The tradition of temple art follows the dates back to centuries and providing a good example of the influence and style that are still significant in modern Thai religious architecture. The elaborate entry doors were made from two enormous slabs of Laotian hardwood and are intricately carved with images of the life of the Buddha.

Here's the painting on top of the main entrance gate. Watch the ceiling paintings as well. Absolutely amazing!

Each window has two wooden panels with wood carvings. In between the windows are big wall paintings, on your right hand side is such a wall painting. Both depict stories of Lord Buddha's previous lifes.

The side walls, covered with more Buddhist paintings, depicting Lord Buddha's previous lifes.

A better view of one of the paintings in between the windows.

The main Buddha statue that is worshipped in this Bot at Wat Plai Laem. During this Buddhist Lent day, plenty of, mainly local, Thai people make merit inside the Bot wearing white dresses.

Outside the new Bot, are new Kinnaree's, similar as in Bang Rak along the road. All well done in style.

Oh yes, and don't you worry about the power supply for the festivities, it's all under control, I brought my power suitcase. TIT or This is Thailand!

Part of this Wat are also the Big Boy and the 14 armed Deity with Big Boy's heart on display a year ago.

For Buddhist amulet collectors, this is an excellent temple as well, currently they have two sales points for amulets.

This temple is one of the high lights of temples on Samui, in my opinion. It's located near Big Buddha, which is much more well known but this Temple is definitely worth a visit!


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