Our Friday started with a tour bus up the hill to visit this big guy who we could see from pretty any place we went, The Big Buddha. I was pretty happy we did this because every since I was in Primary School I have loved Buddhism. I went through a phase were I learnt as much as I could about it and tried to practise it. I wouldn't go as far as to call myself Buddhist but if I was to choose a religion I would choose this one. I still try and follow Buddhism teachings but sometimes it can be hard, especially the part about being at peace with yourself.
I added to my collection that day. At home I have a Buddha collection in my room. I have 3 Laughing Buddhas, a Little Three wise monkeys figurine, a Jade Elephant and a Black Elephant. That day I added another little black Laughing Buddha. I am a true sucker for souvenirs.
Luke and I both got these handmade bracelets put on us by this monk, who gave us a sort of blessing and doused our heads with some sort of water.
The view from the top of the Big Buddha is amazing! You can see the whole Island with the two beaches either side.
Oh yeah, and it was super windy.
These are literally carved from a piece of wood!!
Sunday and Monday Buddha are all work no play.
Tuesday Buddha is a total chiller.
Thursday and Friday Buddha
Humpday Buddha is split in two. (Friday Buddha not included.)
And of course Saturday Buddha is the party Buddha.
Words of wisdom
Look to your right.
Look to your left.
My fisheye attempt.
After the Big Buddha we went to the Tiger Kingdom but I have decided to put the two spiritual places we went together. On the way home from the Tiger Kingdom we went to a temple which I still do not know the name of. We had a really cool cab driver who took us here for free because he thought we should see it. It was a pretty neat way to end our tours for the day.
This temple was quite beautiful, like some sort of mythical castle.
This is the temple we went in to have a look.
Inside the temple there where these three stone monks. People came up and sprayed some gold and stuck it on. I am not too sure if it is actually gold, most likely not. There were a lot of little things like this I noticed by was not really sure what they meant, so I am going to try and find what they mean and tell you.
"They cover the Buddha statue with a thin golden leaf to honour Buddha teachings. In case of pain, the thin golden leaf shall be stuck at the same painful location on the Buddha statue."
"The lotus flower represents one symbol of fortune in Buddhism. It grows in muddy water, and it is this environment that gives forth the flower’s first and most literal meaning: rising and blooming above the murk to achieve enlightenment.
The second meaning, which is related to the first is purification. It resembles the purifying of the spirit which is born into murkiness."
This was a pretty surreal experience. I didn't feel like I should be there. There were a group of Thai people knelt down praying, chanting and shaking these wooden boxes with incense sticks inside.
"For Buddhists in Thailand, incense is an important element of worship to pay respect to Buddha. The lighting of a candle or an oil lamp represents the light of wisdom illuminating the darkness of ignorance. The burning of incense represents the fragrant scent of morality."
This was pretty intense. The first time freaked us out, the second, third and fourth was just kind of painful. They basically let off fireworks inside this chimney type thing. These photos were not zoomed in, we were that close and it was about ten different kinds of painful.
Going to these two Temples was a really amazing experience. If you do go to Thailand, or any country for that matter, I highly advise you to go to as many temples and churches as you can. Even if you aren't a religious person, because God knows I'm not. It really is the best way to immerse yourself within a different culture. Be a wallflower and embrace all of your senses, touch, taste, smell, sound, you will be amazed what you will see when you stop looking down at your iPhone.