Bangkok Walk – Reclining Buddha in Wat Pho Temple

Bangkok Walk – Reclining Buddha in Wat Pho Temple

Wat Pho (วัดโพธิ์), also spelled Wat Po, is a Buddhist temple complex in Phra Nakhon District of Bangkok, the capital and most populous city of Thailand.

It is on Rattanakosin Island, directly south of the Grand Palace. It is also known as the Temple of the Reclining Buddha. Its official name is Wat Phra Chetuphon Wimon Mangkhalaram Rajwaramahawihan.

The temple complex houses the largest collection of Buddha images in Thailand, including a 46 m long reclining Buddha.

The wat and the reclining Buddha (Phra Buddhasaiyas, Thai: พระพุทธไสยาสน์) were built by Rama III in 1832.

The image of the reclining Buddha represents the entry of Buddha into Nirvana and the end of all reincarnations.

The posture of the image is referred to as sihasaiyas, the posture of a sleeping or reclining lion. The figure is 15 m high and 46 m long. It is the third longest reclining Buddha image in Thailand.

The figure has a brick core, which was modelled and shaped with plaster, then gilded. The right arm of the Buddha supports the head with tight curls, which rests on two box-pillows encrusted with glass mosaics.

The soles of the feet of the Buddha are 3 m high and 4.5 m long, and inlaid with mother-of-pearl. They are each divided into 108 arranged panels, displaying the auspicious symbols by which Buddha can be identified, such as flowers, dancers, white elephants, tigers, and altar accessories. At the center of each foot is a circle representing a chakra or ‘energy point’.

Although the reclining Buddha is not a pilgrimage destination, it remains an object of popular piety.

There are 108 bronze bowls in the corridor representing the 108 auspicious characters of Buddha. Visitors may drop coins in these bowls as it is believed to bring good fortune, and it also helps the monks to maintain the wat.

Adjacent to this building is a small garden with a Chinese-style pavilion. The centre piece of the garden is a bodhi tree which was propagated from the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi tree in Sri Lanka that is believed to have originally came from a tree in India under which the Buddha sat while awaiting enlightenment.

Video Source: Wat Pho RECLINING BUDDHA, Bangkok – Walking Tour 4K⁶⁰ from Lazy Explorer on Youtube  CC BY

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