Saturday, May 05, 2007

At Angkor

One of the reasons why I really liked Angkor Wat was that it seemed like such a living, breathing temple. Unlike Ta Prohm or Bayon(which was probably my favourite with all it's Buddhas) there was very active worship at Angkor Wat, and you don't see just the regular bus loads of French and Japanese tourists. It was the Khmer New Year when I was there and it’s a time when Angkor is very crowded with local tourists, who come there not only to see the temple but also offer prayers. It made for some interesting photographs.

Offering prayers to Vishnu -Angkor Wat.

(It was so terribly hot and bright that looking at anything gold or yellow was akin to staring directly at the sun.)

See what I mean? The yellow umbrella looks golden!

(I love this picture. I just loved that man sitting in the Angor Wat complex with his very funky umbrella.)

Clothes to match the temple, I think – Preah Khan.

Climbing Angkor.

(The monks are adorable. Their saffron robes contrast so brilliantly with the temple.)

This particular monk was smoking up with his friend in an isolated corner of the temple. Are they allowed to do that?


Tabula Rasa said...

nice! *especially* the one with the umbrella.

Are they allowed to do that?

maybe they're rastafarian?

Ali Riza ARICAN said...

Monks in Thailand smoke a lot and people usually ignore them as if they are under a big pressure and smoking for them can be justified. I can accept a monk smoking but when I see a monk browsing in a CD shop and buying pirated movies/sowtwares, this hurts... To understand more about a life of a Buddhis monk, you can read Phra Peter Pannapadipo's "Phra Farang". it is about a British monk's memoirs in the remote regions of Thailand...

TS said...


Chimera said...

the idol looked like Kaali to me , surprised that it is Vishnu.
Among the other photos i liked the monk on the stairs - brings out the contrast of colors very well.

Szerelem said...

TR: Thank you. Rastafarian buddhists?? Hmmm....Can you even be rastafarian if you're Buddhist?

Ali: Thanks for the book reccomendation. I was actually wondering where the monks/monasteries get money from. Donations? Also I don't know if I'd be that harsh on them for buying pirated stuff....but maybe that's only cos I'm guilty of that too....

TS: Aww...thank you.

Swati: Ya, it's Vishnu. Actually Angkor Wat is dedicated to Vishnu. I don't see any temples dedicated to Kali actually. Theres more Vishnu - Shiva - Buddha.

That Armchair Philosopher said...

the seated monk. very idyllic photograph, methinks.

Tabula Rasa said...

i can see how there's a sharp divergence in hairstyles prescribed, but then religion is supposed to be more than scalp deep, right?

Aishwarya said...

*grin * I have a rather good saffron robe-contrasting-with-temple picture myself. I must dig it out and email it to you or something.

And you liked the bread! You are a bread person! This is excellent.

Revealed said...

Maybe they were pastafarian monks

km said...

Rastafarian Buddhists? You mean the ones who sing "Yak Soldier", instead of "Buffalo Soldier"?

//great pics.

Tabula Rasa said...

maybe they sing buffalo milk.

Szerelem said...

TAP: Seated monk smoking up? Idyllic? I should think so :)

TR: religion is supposed to be more than scalp deep *Smacks head, but also chuckles*.

Aishwarya: Please do mail me! :)
And yes the bread was awesome. The French could learn a thing or two.

Revealed: Hmm...thats interesting. I think pastafarian is more likely than rastafarian actually.

km: It's so hot in Cambodia I doubt any yaks could survive there. Water buffalos more likely.

TR: Why buffalo milk?

Tabula Rasa said...

buffalo from the rasta side of the family, and milk from the human kindness side.

i know i shouldn't be saying this on your nice blog but i've actually been chuckling all day about the hindi anuvaad of *that* particular version.

daktara said...

good work from you

vanshica said...

Wonderful pictures,especially the buddhist monk on the stairs and the man with the umbrella.
In vietnam what posture do u find Budha in?Sitting,standing,lying? It changes from place to place.In India it's the sitting version,in Sri Lanka the standing Budha where as in Thailand one finds the lying Budha.

the wannabe indian punkster said...



thalassa_mikra said...

How I long for Angkor! Why is nothing taking me to Cambodia anytime soon? Uff, looking for a job is no fun.

You can guess I really envy your life at the moment.

Big Wave said...

loved the monks smoking up:) just discovered your blog....have to fight my very indian urge to abandon all politeness and yell out, "HOW DO YOUR FUND YOUR TRAVEL???" ahem, loved the photos:)

Szerelem said...

TR: ummmmm

daktara: thanks

V: Hmm....well i don't know if there's any one position that one finds that Buddha's in all these places. Like in Thailand you see lying, seated and standing Buddhas.
Didn't see many in Vietnam. In Cambodia were mostly sitting or in the case of Bayon, just the face.

Punkster: Yes. And soon.

TM: I'm looking for a job right now too. It sucks. I feel your pain.

big wave: Thanks. And travel funding has been mostly TA/RA work. I did a seven month internship so that funded a couple of trips. And often conferences pay for the airfare - which is the case for the upcoming trip. (ummm though other than that this trip will be funded by my parents. They aren't very happy). Sigh.

Renovatio said...

Yeah, are they allowed to do that?
Lovely pictures, I'm dying to get up and visit places, but I'm too lazy to do the get up bit.

the wannabe indian punkster said...