Temple of the Dawn

Thank you all so much for the great suggestions! I am leaning toward "Box o' Buddha" or the "Dharma Drop" since the alliteration makes them catchy. My alliterative genius totally failed me with the "Buddha Bomb" as I totally agree with the b-word being a very unfortunate choice. I mean, it is one of my die-hard rules to not use the b-word in many cases. Such as on a plane, a train, when speaking in regards to the London Olympics, and certainly on the internet. Using it on a weekly basis could get me on the wrong kind of most-watched bloglist, if you get what I mean. So its out, thanks to your help!

This adventure actually occurred over a week ago, but since my beloved has been all Watted-Out, I had to space our temple adventures out a bit. They are, however, my favorite part of Bangkok so far. There is something uplifting and powerful about being in a holy place. Like Wat Arun, the temples and shrines of this city feel like giant conductors of faith. People come here because they BELIEVE in something. Believe in a way that I don't yet fully comprehend, but I know it is channelled here through people. I love it.

We crossed the Chao Phraya for 3 baht (that's like ten cents) to land almost immediately in front of the temple, a most gorgeous structure consisting of this sky-high central prang, surrounded by four smaller prang and a small maze of pavilions.

 My favorites for sure were the guardians Tosakanth and Sahassateja, fearsome and gorgeously armored at the entrance. Around them were spread gorgeous gardens and fierce lion statues. But these giants were beautiful and terrifying, or terrifically beautiful?

We entered the main pavilion to discover the walls inside lined with these luminous golden Buddhas. I made sure the boys behaved respectfully, which they usually do. There's something about a holy place that usually puts them on their best behavior.  Ok, maybe the demons standing guard helped a bit too.



From a distance, the central prang appears grey or almost muddy in color, but up close it was extraordinary. Every inch was decorated with bright colors, shards of glass and porcelain put in the shape of flowers. More demons stood side-by-side around several levels of the spyre, like they were holding it up together.

After paying a very small fee, and checking that our clothes were appropriate, we got to see it up close. The Philips even climbed the steep stairs, while Nate and I took it in from below.

There were tears of apprehension, and I heard some cries of terror on the way down. But they did make it down safely. Phew.

We went on to visit another great Wat that same day, but I'll share that another day. For now.....



jen said...

nice pics! the water looks so .. dirty. must look like that in person as well.

jen said...

ps .. those guard statues are freaking me out. i was thinking about them randomly today while driving.