Appon's Thai Travel & Tourism

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Swatstika Temple

swatstika-temple.jpg

I'm calling this the Swastika temple, a temple covered in Swastikas, not for the Nazis but for the Hindu good luck symbol, that the Nazi adopted/hijacked for their own.

Phra Narai is a major Hindu god, and this archeology site was the location of a temple to this god. When the Burmese invaded Thailand in the 1785 they tried to remove this statue, but it was too big and heavy to move, so they left it up in the hills nearby.

Trees grew around it, the roots enveloping the statue of Phra Narai and a statue of servant Phra Lak, wrapping them safety, without breaking them.

hindu-temple-closeup.jpg

I found an Indian curator to this site, he's been here in Thailand decades and his Thai is excellent. He tells me the back story to this place, and explains that the Nazi's wanted this statue too, for the good-luck symbolism.

The Burmese invasion didn't last long, they were driven back in Phuket by the two sisters, the same two sisters celebrated in the Heroines Monument in the middle of Phuket island. When these statues were found again, they were taken from the trees and moved to a museum in Phuket. The trees that wrapped the statues, what happened to them? They died not long after, not surviving the loss of their wards.

hindu-god.jpg

I'm going to visit the museum in Phuket when I'm next south, to close the loop on this story. I know this museum, but never realized it contained an important artifact.

Meanwhile here in this national park, they're building a museum and temple to celebrate this statue and remind people of this archeological site, and I'm doing my part to reclaim the swastika back from the Nazi connotation.

The temple can be found here (link to map).

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