Thursday, February 26, 2015

Flames Of Devotion At Wat Chaiya Mangkalaram...

Our walk through the by-lanes of Georgetown, that are seeped in history, led us to our next destination, the Wat Chaiya Mangkalaram (วัดไชยมังคลาราม). The temple was highly recommended destination by a colleague who had visited Penang last October.
The Wat Chaiya Mangkalaram is a Thai temple, built in 1845 on a piece of land gifted by Queen Victoria to four women trustees as a gesture of goodwill to boost trading relations with  Thailand. The first monk of the temple was from Thailand, Phorthan Kuat, who was also known as the "Powerful Monk". It is said that Phorthan was quite a foodie and was very fond of laksa, a local specialty. In his honour, even today devotees bring a bowl of laksa as an offering to the shrine.



We enter the hallowed precincts of the Wat Chaiya Mangkalaram...
 




The shrine is guarded by dragons...


 
While the apsara welcomes us in...

 
And a divine warrior guards the entrance... 


At 108 feet, this is the third largest reclining Buddha statue in the world...

 
As we got to know during our visit to the Jade Buddha Temple or the Yufo Chan Si (玉佛禅寺) in Shanghai in 2013, a reclining statue represents the Buddha during his last illness, about to enter the parinirvana. He is lying on the right flank, his head resting on a cushion or relying on his right elbow, supporting his head with his hand...
 
 
The statue looks so serene and content...


 
Devotees praying... How similar they are to us back home in India!



 
The flames of devotion...
 


 
We too lighted a flame, a flame of respect and devotion...


And we headed out to Gurney Drive...



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