Saraburi

Saraburi

Buddha footprint in Saraburi
Geography

A Buddha’s footprint is located in Wat Phra Phuttabat in Saraburi Province, 20 km. from Lopburi on the Saraburi – Lopburi route. It is very important to Buddhists as it is located on natural rocky ground, while the Buddha footprints, commonly found in many temples, are imitations of various materials, from wood to metal.

Wat Phra Phuttabat

is a royal temple of the first order, as is Wat Phra Pathom Chedi in the province of Nakorn Pathom.

History

The footprint was discovered during the reign of King Song Tham (1610-1628). A group of monks went on pilgrimage to Ceylon to pay homage to the Buddha footprint on Mount Sumonkun. They learned from Ceylonese monks that such an imprint could also be made in Thailand. After hearing about it, the king ordered his officials to search the whole country for the print. At that time a hunter in the Saraburi area who was chasing a wounded Deer found a large, unusually shaped hole in a rock in a hilly area that was filled with water. The shape of the hole looked like the footprint of a very large person. The hunter reported his find to the mayor, who forwarded the message to the capital. King Song Tham himself came to inspect the Find and saw certain signs of a Buddha imprint. Therefore the place was declared a holy Buddhist site and a mondop was built over the footprint, on the surrounding land a hill on which the imprint was found was renamed “Mount Suwan Banpot or Mount Satchapan Kiri.

Worth seeing inside the temple

The Mondop, which currently covers the footprint, was built by Rama I and replaced the one from the Ayutthaya period. This had been destroyed when Ayutthaya was besieged and some Chinese soldiers took the opportunity to steal valuable items from the temple and burned the Mondop to melt the gold in the protective roof over the imprint.

  1. Eight door panels They are the work of artists from the time of Rama I and replace those destroyed during the temple council.
  2. The canopy over the footprint. Also from the time of Rama I and also a replacement for the original that was destroyed by fire.
  3. Buddha footprint. It is a natural impression in pumice stone. He is 50 cm. Wide, 150 cm. Long and 30 cm. Deep. It has now been covered with gold, but the ground surface still reveals the natural rock.

The Bot was built by King Songtham and has been repaired several times. The end of the gable shows an image of Vishnu. The door panels bear the royal emblems of the first four rulers Bangkok, the U – nalom, Garuda, the Prasart and the crown.

Vihans

There are several Vihan here, in detail

  1. The lower Vihan (Vihan sounded long) In this Vihan the gifts of the Chinese are stored.
  2. The middle Vihan and the upper Vihan. This was used to wait for offerings from the believers to Buddha. However, for security reasons, the valuable objects were transferred to the Vihan Luang, so that these two Vihans now only accommodate a few Buddha images.
  3. The Vihan Phra Palelayka. This Vihan contains various Buddha figures, the Buddha in Palaylai, the Resting Buddha and Buddhas in other positions ‘
  4. The Vihan Luang. A very large Vihan with a door and window panels which, like the bot, show the emblems of the four first rulers of Bangkok. Originally this Vihan was set up as accommodation for the female members of the royal family on their pilgrimages to Saraburi, but later the building was used as a sleeping place for monks who came here and as a place of worship for Buddhists on holidays. Today it serves as a temple museum. Among the valuable offerings that are kept here is a gold model of the footprint.
The Vihan Phra Buddha Batr Sri Roi

Literally translated this means: Vihan of the four footprints of the Buddhas. The model of four prints was made according to the belief of Theravade Buddhism, according to which four Buddhas have already been born and one is still expected. The four tracks are therefore designed as four impressions standing on top of one another.

The changing pavilion

Located at the bottom of a staircase that leads to the Mondop. This pavilion was built under the rule of King Song Tham, but has been repaired and restored several times. It was the place where the king used to change before going to worship.