Sunday, May 13, 2007

Thai Temple Glossary part 2

(Photo : Mondop at Wat Phrakaew, Bangkok)

Mondop is a square based structure usually topped with a spire. It is often erected above the libray holding the sacred Buddhist scripts.

(Photo :Ho trai Wat Phra Sing)

Ho Trai : The Ho Trai (also transcripted as"Ho Phra") is the library of the Wat. It is usually a very small, highly decorated building.

In the Central Plains it often sits on columns in a pond . The holy scripts and sacred manuscripts of the Wat are kept inside.

Viharn : A Viharn is a sermon hall. It is usually the busiest building in a Wat and open to everyone (provided the visitor behaves according to the temple etiquette!: you must be properly dressed, take off your shoes before entering a building and behave quietly) Just like the Bots, Viharns hold an altar and one or several Buddha images.

Sala : A Sala is an open-sided pavilion. Some Viharns are built in this style

Naga : A Naga is a representation of a mystical serpent that according to the holy scripts sheltered the Buddha while he was meditating. In temple architecture, it runs down the edge of the roof, or, especially in Lanna (North of Thailand) temples, flanks the staircase that ascends to the Viharn or Bot. In sculptures, it is depicted sheltering the head of the Buddha with its own. Beautiful representations of Nagas are known from Khmer art, as found in the Khmer ruins in the Northeast of Thailand.

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