Temples, Temples, Temples Pt. II

Hi there!

During our trip to Bangkok, Thailand, Louis and I decided that we had enough temple time in Indonesia, so we tried to keep our visit to temples in Thailand to a minimum. Again, I am not sure what the names of all the temples are, so if you have an idea, do let me know! One that I do know of is the Erawan Shrine as it was recently in the news. Here is a list of 5 temples we visited / saw while we were in Thailand!

IMG_7319 IMG_7312 IMG_7317Erawan Shrine

You may have heard about this shrine as it was pretty recent in the news. And not good news either. Apparently, there was some sort of bombing at the exact shrine Louis and I visited. It really put things into perspective as we were literally just there! It could have happened while we were there, but luckily it did not. Prayers out for the victims. You can read more about it here if you are interested. Or you can just google search it as there are a ton of news sources. The link I included is just a random one I searched, so I have no bias on any particular news source. Again, feel free to google search and find out for yourself if that is what’s preferred!

IMG_7323Anyways, aside from the recent news, Louis and I did have a nice time at the temple. It is in the heart of Bangkok and near a lot of shopping areas, so it’s hard to miss. When we arrived, Louis knew exactly what to do (thankfully!) so he kind of explained the rituals to me while purchasing some flowers and incense.

I did not participate and mostly just observed as individuals were burning the incense, hanging flowers, and bowing multiple times. There wasn’t as much kneeling as some of the other temples we’ve been to, but the practices were pretty similar.

You might notice on the photo directly left, there is a figure in the middle that is golden. I learned that no matter which way you are facing, there is always a face looking towards you. I thought that was kind of interesting and just thought I would note!

IMG_7262Temple of Emerald Buddha

During our cruise, we saw the Temple of Emerald Buddha, which I briefly mentioned. We weren’t able to get up close and personal due to limited time and well, being on a boat! Louis referred to the Temple of Emerald Buddha as ‘Sleeping Buddha’ which sounded more familiar to me. The statue was HUGE. It’s hard to tell from a photo, but I’m pretty sure you would be very small next to this statue.

It kind of took us off guard to see the ‘Sleeping Buddha’ pop out of nowhere while on our cruise. As you can see, a lot of people wanted to snag a quick photo as it was so unexpected, so please excuse the randos! Because it was so crowded and sudden, we just sat back, enjoyed our wine, and called it good after a few photos. 🙂

IMG_7220Wat Arun

Also on our cruise, we saw the famous Wat Arun, which looked gorgeous lit up at night! Of course, photos don’t do it justice and so I apologize for the bad shot. There are a lot better photos online if you google search ‘Wat Arun’.

I really kick myself and wish we were able to visit this temple, if any, while in Thailand. It just looks really appealing, I mean, how attractive is that?! 😉 I’m sure you are probably able to go inside and see statues and detailed designs of some sort. Next time I go to Thailand, I will definitely visit the inside of Wat Arun! What I can say is that it is very beautiful and I’m glad we could at least see it!

IMG_7327Temple #4

This temple or shrine I noticed is slightly different from the other ones we saw in Thailand. Near Siam Paragon and an outdoor market, we came across this very vertical and pointy shrine. There was a golden vase to put incense in, similar to the Erawan Shrine. This particular shrine wasn’t as big as the others we saw, but it did stand out to us as it was completely white (except for the center piece, which was gold) and in a random spot. We did not spend a lot of time at this shrine, but we did observe people bowing and lighting incense. What is the name of this particular shrine? Hmm…

IMG_7346Temple #5

Last but not least, I wanted to include this temple even though we did not get up close and personal with it. We did, however, stumble upon it in the distance as we went for a night stroll. I think what really caught my eye was how ‘East Asian’ the temple looked. It almost looks like Chinese or Korean temples with the pointed corners on the roof. That’s what I think anyway! Just thought I’d include this temple before closing this post!

I guess we ended up seeing more temples than we anticipated 🙂 but that’s okay, it was still a neat experience and we were able to draw comparisons between the temples in Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia. One thing I took away from being in Southeast Asia is the similarities and differences between religion–how people practice, tolerance between different religious groups, and just religion in general (what is Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity, etc.). Being raised where religion is very homogeneous, I didn’t see these kinds of attitudes like in Southeast Asia. It was a good experience for me to not only understand my partner better, but to understand culture, tolerance, and acceptance.

Whew, well, after this post, I only have 2 more left until I am all caught up! And what a relief–I know it’s been bugging me to get caught up on my blog, but for my fellow bloggers out there, I think you can understand how time-consuming it really is! 😉 But I know I will definitely look back and be happy I did it! So keep it up if you’re in the same boat and need some motivation! 😀

Until next time,

Jess

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