Friday, October 25, 2013

white temple of chiang rai

This is our last post in Thailand. We were taking a bus to the boarder to cross over to Laos but along the way, unbeknownst to us, we stopped at the famous contemporary unconventional Buddhist temple, Wat Rong Khun in Chiang Rai. It's especially appropriate for us to be posting about it so near to Halloween. You'll see why...

It's a very new Wat (1997) - in fact, it's still being completed - and is one artist's commentary on Buddhism. It was definitely the strangest and most elaborate Wat we had ever seen, with pop culture references all over it.

Heads are hung all over the complex depicting of souls who have not yet overcome cravings and haven't reached Buddha's abode... well obviously these guys are going to have a hard time reaching enlightenment.

The detail was amazing. It was a place you felt you could look around for hours and keep seeing new things. But since we only had twenty minutes, we did a flurry of pictures and jumped back into the bus on our way to Laos.

Death watching over the souls trapped in Hell. You can't see detail that well in this picture, but all those are hands reaching up, and bones, and some kind of spiky vines holding them all down. Really beautiful and creepy.

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