Saturday, June 09, 2007

Travels in Pattani - Wat Saikow & Wat Si Mahapo

After leaving Wat Changhai, I went to Wat Saikow, which was only a few kilometres away. This is the temple where Ajarn Nong was abbot for many years. Ajarn Nong & Ajarn Tim of Wat Changhai were the first 2 masters to create LP Tuad amulets, for they were Sangha brothers who became equally famous for popularizing LP Tuad's protective power. Both masters have since passed away.
The temple gate. Compared to Wat Changhai, Wat Saikow is virtually deserted save for the current abbot and a few lay helpers hanging around. I heard most of the monks left to avoid the violence in this region. So there were no soldiers to guard this temple & most of the temple buildings were closed also.
The Wihan (Vihara), closed to public.

Shrine to LP Tuad, which was opened luckily.

Inside the shrine room, which venerates LP Tuad, Ajarn Nong & Ajarn Tim.

Inside the main Sala.

The beautiful Bot, which was also closed. As there was nothing much to see, I went to see the abbot to get some amulets from him before making a move.

Next I went to Wat Si Mahapo, which was slightly further away. I had originally intended to go to Wat Sampowchey to see LP Thong, but the driver informed me that he was in Bangkok to avoid trouble as well. So I changed my mind & decided to go to Mahapo instead. This is the temple of LP Daeng, a master also famous for making LP Tuad amulets like LP Thong. But he had passed away years ago whereas LP Thong is still around. There were quite a lot of people in this temple and thus a squad of soldiers was there to protect them as well. The soldiers smiled at me while I toured around; I think they had probably had not seen tourists for a long time. Above is the temple's Bodhi Tree.

The standing statue of LP Daeng, the past abbot of Wat Si Mahapo.

The statue of LP Tuad riding on a ship & performing a miracle with his foot. This is the kind of LP Tuad image that Wat Si Mahapo is well-known for. Behind is the shrine to LP Daeng as well as the temple counter.

A Sala with a royal Buddha statue inside, known as LP Ong Dam. Thought I saw this kind of image before elsewhere.

Shrine to LP Tuad.

A banner advertising the release of LP Wan buchas. LP Wan is from Wat Sabah Yoi in Songkhla. Can't say I know who he is or what he is well-known for.

The Bot was closed.

Inside the main Sala where many students were having their lunch under instruction from the monks on how to eat with mindfulness. Guess this must be a religious camp for them.

Inside the LP Daeng shrine, where we see his seated golden statue. Behind the altar is LP Daeng's casket. The driver told me LP Daeng's body was also undecaying like LP Tong of Wat Pagor, but I can't really tell since they did not use a glass casket like in LP Tong's case. After praying to LP Daeng, I approached the temple counter at the side to obtain some souvenirs. The amulets here are quite cheap & the helpers quite friendly. A Luang Pee (Venerable Brother) at the counter even gave me & the driver free amulets! This left me a good impression of the temple. With that, we made our way back to Hadyai.

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