The Reclining Buddha

The Attitude of Teaching Asurindarahu

Legend has it that there was a powerful and extremely arrogant demon with giant body called Asurindarahu. The Buddha would like to bring this demon to the path of Dhamma. He knew that the demon was so intelligent that he could understand the Dhamma and attained a high stage of enlightenment.

In order to subdue this demon’s arrogance, Lord Buddha decided to transform himself into a bigger form, which would be a hundred time larger than the demon. He then lied down waiting for the demon whom ego would be subdued.

Now when we travel around Thailand and find a reclining Buddha image with opening eyes, we can be certain that the Buddha isn’t sleeping, dying, or entering Nirvana. But he’s performing the Attitude of Teaching Asurindarahu.

This Attitude of Teaching Asurindarahu is accountable for more than 90% of the giant-sized reclining Buddha images in Thailand, including all of the 3 largest ones, at Wat Khun Inthapramun, Wat Phra Non Chaksi Worawihan and Wat Pho

The Reclining Buddha image at Wat Khun Inthapramun

Wat Khun Inthapramun

This Reclining Buddha image had been built by Khun Inthapramun, a tax farmer in the late Ayutthaya era, who was later sentenced to death for a corruption crime, in which he had used the corrupted money to build this Buddha image. His body remains is still housed nearby the Buddha image.

Unlike the others on our list, this reclining Buddha image is located in an outdoor area. The Buddha image is on top of our list at 50 meters in length.

The Reclining Buddha image at Wat Phra Non Chaksi

Wat Phra Non Chaksi Worawihan

Wat Phra Non Chaksi Worawihan enshrines the second largest reclining Buddha image, measuring 48 meters long, inside its image hall. The temple is more popular among local tourists than foreigners, as many Thai couples and families will drive a hundred kilometer from Bangkok to Sing Buri everyday just to make a wish from the Buddha image.

The temple is certainly worth a visit, and not far from the main road if you’re traveling by land to Chiang Mai from Bangkok. But be sure to mention your interest in this temple to your tour operator.

The Reclining Buddha image at Wat Pho

Wat Pho – The Temple of the Reclining Buddha

One of the most beautiful reclining Buddha image is enshrined inside of Wat Pho’s image hall. The temple, which is located adjacent to the Grand Palace, and also known as the Temple of the Reclining Buddha, is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world.

Even though the reclining Buddha image here is only the third largest with 46 meters in length, most people still consider this splendid Buddha image to be the most beautiful in the country, especially when looking at two feet of the Buddha image, which are beautifully decorated with mother-of-pearl inlays, a masterpiece work of the early Bangkok era.