Wat Pho & The Grand Palace

Trip Start Jan 13, 2013
1
6
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Trip End Feb 05, 2013


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Flag of Thailand  , Bangkok,
Friday, January 18, 2013

Visited Wat Pho Buddhist temple today (Temple of the Reclining Buddha).and The Grand Palace, which used to be where the king lived until he built an even grander palace.  I think the Buddhists have been in competition with the Catholics.  All of the gold leaf and lavish temples seem a bit incongruous with Buddhism.

The crowds at the Grand Palace were astounding - mostly Chinese tourists - who are not so good at taking turns or standing in lines.  After the crowds and heat - the cold, tenon-scented clothes they gave us on the bus felt wonderful!

Every Thai male spends some time becoming a Buddhist monk - sort of a rite of passage.  But too few are remaining these days and so they are having trouble supporting the temples - not enough monks.  In Thailad, women cannot be ordained as monks - they can in Sri Lanka.  Some have come to Thailand and are creating some controversy.  It is very common to see orange-robed monks walking through the streets and markets.  One has a TV talk show and the temples have Facebook pages.  Made me smile.
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