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Saturday, September 23, 2023

Enchanting Wat Rong Khun: Art & Dhamma

Experiencing Chiang Rai isn’t complete without a visit to Wat Rong Khun. This unique temple offers an evolving journey through the city’s contemporary art scene, with constantly updating decorations and lessons, inviting visitors to delve deeper into Dhamma teachings and explore the philosophy of life through endless art.

The journey begins at the gates of a symbolic bridge from hell to heaven, leading to the Buddha Sculpture in the ordination hall. Sculptures along this path represent an inferno filled with deceased souls, symbolizing the struggle of life and the journey to achieve peace of mind. Walking through this inferno untouched by temptations leads us towards serenity and heaven, embodied in the magnificent white Buddha in the ordination hall.

Chiang Rai is home to some of the most celebrated artists of Thailand, including Ajarn Thawal Dachanee and Ajarn Chalermchai Kositpipat. Dachanee’s work in the Black House Museum, which explores the earth and human consciousness, complements Chalermchai’s beautiful work at Wat Rong Khun.

Ajarn Chalermchai Kositpipat, a dedicated artist, is the creator of the stunning and unique Buddhist temple, the White Temple, one of the region’s prime tourist attractions. His art, an amalgamation of painting and sculpture, symbolizes the reign of King Ram 9 and adorns the pages of the book “Phra Maha Chonok.”

In Wat Rong Khun, Ajarn Chalermchai uses white to symbolize purity, beauty, and the cleanliness of the soul, representing the spiritual journey towards liberation from suffering and the cycle of birth and death. The temple entrance illustrates that happiness can be achieved by letting go of temptation, greed, and desire, enabling visitors to experience inner peace.

Ajarn Chalermchai, the artist who created Wat Rong Khun and dedicated himself Contribute
the philosophy of Buddhism.

After studying Buddhism and experiencing personal success, Chalermchai realized that external success doesn’t alleviate suffering. His study of Buddhism led him to true happiness and inspired him to dedicate his life to creating Buddhist-inspired art. His work has transformed Wat Rong Khun into an art temple attraction and a key tourist destination in Chiang Rai, allowing visitors to understand life’s philosophy.

The pillars driving Chalermchai’s belief in creating Wat Rong Khun are Nation, Religion, and King. His compassion for his country led him to create art that has become a national treasure, giving Wat Rong Khun global recognition in Buddhist art. His study of Dhamma transformed him into a serene person, leading him to dedicate himself to Buddhism. His respect for King Rama 9, known for his dedication to rural development, inspired him to create art for the monarch.

The Thai people’s resilience, coupled with Thailand’s unique culture, religion, and history, are reflected in the artwork at Wat Rong Khun. Visitors to this Landmark of 4 Destinations are invited to contemplate life’s meaning and spirit, appreciate Thailand’s abundant resources, and experience the warm hospitality that brings true happiness to guests worldwide.




Written By:  Prakaidown Baengsuntia







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