Wat Rong Khun (Thai: วัดร่องขุ่น) is a contemporary unconventional buddhist and Hindu temple in Chiang Rai, Thailand. It was designed by Chalermchai Kositpipat, one of Thailand’s most renowned artists, who wanted to build a temple all in white to signify the purity of Lord Buddha. Construction began in 1997.
Wat Rong Khun is different from any other temple in Thailand, as its ubosot (Pali: uposatha; consecrated assembly hall) is designed in white color with some use of white glass. The white color stands for Lord Buddha’s purity; the white glass stands for Lord Buddha’s wisdom that "shines brightly all over the Earth and the Universe".
The bridge leading to the temple represents the crossing over from the cycle of rebirth to the Abode of Buddha. The small semicircle before the bridge stands for the human world. The big circle with fangs is the mouth of Rahu, meaning impurities in the mind, a representation of hell or suffering.
All the paintings inside the ubosot (assembly hall) have golden tones. The four walls, ceiling and floor contain paintings showing an escape from the defilements of temptation to reach a supramundane state. On the roof, there are four kinds of animals representing earth, water, wind and fire. The elephant stands for the earth; the naga stands for water; the swan's wings represent wind; and the lion’s mane represents fire.
In 1997, Chalermchai Kositpipat volunteered his service to carry out the construction of the ubosot at his own expense as an offering to Lord Buddha, but he later altered the plan as he saw fit in such a way that Wat Rong Khun developed into a prominent site attracting both Thai and foreign visitors.
Nowadays, Wat Rong Khun is still being constructed. When completed, the construction project of Wat Rong Khun will consist of nine buildings: the ubosot, the hall containing Lord Buddha’s relics, the hall containing Buddha images, the preaching hall, the contemplation hall, the monk’s cell, the door facade of the Buddhavasa, the art gallery, and the toilets.
ASIA is probably one of the most enigmatic continents in the world. Not only is it rich in very diverse cultures, but it is also rich in history. You will never run out of wonderful places to visit in this wonderful and mysterious continent.