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September 30, 2013

【Thai Temples】Wat Phai Ngern Chotanaram

Wat Phai Ngern (Thai: วัดไผ่เงิน) in Bang Kho Laem District, Bangkok, was originally called "Wat Pailom" (Thai: วัดไผ่ล้อม) and built in 2335 BE (AD 1792), the reign of King Rama I, by an unknown builder.

Wat Phai Ngern Chotanaram

At that time, some lands of Khlong Toei District should be taken by the government for building a port, and a local temple "Wat Ngern", destined to be abandoned, had temple buildings and monks of Wat Ngern combined with those of Wat Pailom, thus the revised temple name "Wat Pai Ngern." In 2482 BE (AD 1939), a Buddha image "Luang Phor Samrit" (Thai: หลวงพ่อสัมฤทธิ์) was moved from an abandoned temple Wat Chotikaram (or named Wat Phraya Kai) to Wat Phai Ngern.

Therefore, Wat Phai Ngern is the combination of Wat Ngern, Wat Pailom, and Wat Chotikaram. The temple name was changed again to "Wat Phai Ngern Chotanaram" in 2483 BE (AD 1940).

Wat Phai Ngern Chotanaram

The Buddha image "Luang Phor Samrit" was estimated to be built between the end of Sukhothai Kingdom and the beginning of Ayutthaya Kingdom. During Thonburi Kingdom, Luang Phor Samrit was enshrined from Vientiane, Laos, to Wat Chotikaram.

Made of bronze, width between knees 104 inch (264 cm), the gold-plated Buddha image sits in "Subduing Mara" posture (Thai: ปางมารวิชัย, "Pang Man Wichai") and a fine example of Sukhothai art. At that time both Luang Phor Samrit and the golden Buddha of Wat Traimitr Withayaram were enshrined in Wat Chotikaram's ubosot and vihara respectively.

The square ubosot with gold glided glass was rebuilt in 2500 BE (AD 1957) by Luang Phor Si (Thai: หลวงพ่อสี) and other monks. It took about 3 million bahts and five years to finish the construction work.

Funds for building the vihara of Luang Phor Samrit were raised and donated by Chinese Association. The construction finished in 2509 BE (AD 1966), a blend of Chinese and Thai arts.

Luang Phor Samrit

"Phra Sukhothai Traimit" (Thai: พระสุโขทัยไตรมิต) is another principal Buddha image in Wat Phai Ngern, enshrined in secondary ubosot.

Phra Sukhothai Traimit

The mummy of Luang Phor Si, the former abbot, is enshrined in Wat Phai Ngern and could be worshipped for safety and smooth life.

Luang Phor Si


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