Saturday, November 29, 2014

Bangkok, Thailand

Wat Pho, or the Temple of the Reclining Buddha was the first public university in Thailand, offering courses in science, religion and literature.  

Giant Buddha is 46 meters long and 15 meters high.  He's covered in gold leaf.  

His feet are 5 meters long and decorated with mother of pearl in characteristics of Buddha.

There are 108 bronze bowls running along the wall and one can purchase 108 coins for good luck.  108 refers to the number of positive symbols and actions that helped Buddha to perfection.

There are over 1000 gilded images of Buddha in the complex-

These funny Chinese statues were once used as ballasts on ships coming from China-

There are 91 chedis (stupas)-

 decorated with ceramic pottery flowers and colorful tiles-

An interesting roof-

Wat Arun or the Temple of Dawn is on the Chao Phraya River.  It represents Mount Meru which is the center of the world and the idea of single mindedness in Buddhist cosmology.

It was built between 1809 - 1851 by Kings Rama II and III.  There are steep steps leading up to the middle-

More ceramic pottery decoration-

Chinatown is a bustling place filled with gold shops, wholesalers selling everything from jewelry to stuffed toys to shoes and of course, sidewalk eateries-

Tomorrow we're off to Kanchanaburi!  I am glad to leave Bangkok!

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