The White Temple. Thailand
Wat Rong Khun is a Buddhist temple of incredible beauty, which is located 14 km to the south of the town of Chiang Rai in northern Thailand; foreigners call it the White Temple. This unusual temple of unconventional Buddhist manner, with mysterious figures and amazing white decoration materials, was designed by a Thai artist Chalermchai Kositpipat and built in 1997. It is blindingly white, that is why it is widely known as White Temple. The temple is still under construction, although it was badly damaged during the earthquake in May 5, 2014, it was rebuilt back to its original appearance. Chalermchai Kositpipat builds the temple for his own money, without sponsors, so that nobody could prevent to carry out his ideas about the construction.
All of its splendid decoration is simply mesmerizing; it can be examined for hours. The temple is decorated with small pieces of mirror, which make the building so sparkling. They say you should come to admire the temple at sunrise or sunset, when the decoration shimmers in the sunlight.
The path on the way to the temple is very symbolically called “road from hell to heaven.” And indeed, the spectacle around is disturbing with all those hands reaching for you… Movement on the path is unilateral, it is a purely ideological. It is always talked about through a megaphone at the entrance. And the hands stretching out of the ground symbolize sufferings and doubts, various guards, the fangs of mythical demon Rahu and the bridge over the pond are here to divide the worlds.
In the temple there are two statues of Buddha, different images on the eternal theme of the struggle between good and evil. The artist added some modern motives into his paintings – here you can see Batman, Superman, Neo from the Matrix and Jedi, who are fighting with evil. All this make the White Temple to stand out among the rest of traditional ones.
Within the complex you will find many mysterious sculptures, gallery of paintings of the owner, a pond with fish. Here is also a huge gilded building which attracts special attention. And what do you think is it? This amazing structure is a conventional free of charge toilet!