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A very spiritual place.

Angkor Wat

There are two great complexes of ancient temples in Southeast Asia, one at Bagan in Burma, the other at Angkor in Cambodia. The temples of Angkor, built by the Khmer civilization between 802 and 1220 AD, represent one of humankind's most astonishing and enduring architectural achievements. From Angkor the Khmer kings ruled over a vast domain that reached from Vietnam to China to the Bay of Bengal. The structures one sees at Angkor today, more than 100 stone temples in all, are the surviving remains of a grand religious, social and administrative metropolis whose other buildings - palaces, public buildings, and houses - were built of wood and have long since decayed and disappeared.

At the temple of Phnom Bakheng there are 108 surrounding towers. The number 108, considered sacred in both Hindu and Buddhist cosmologies, is the sum of 72 plus 36 (36 being ½ of 72). The number 72 is a primary number in the sequence of numbers linked to the earth’s axial precession, which causes the apparent alteration in the position of the constellations over the period of 25,920 years, or one degree every 72 years. Another mysterious fact about the Angkor complex is its location 72 degrees of longitude east of the Pyramids of Giza. The temples of Bakong, Prah Ko and Prei Monli at Roluos, south of the main Angkor complex, are situated in relation to each other in such a way that they mirror the three stars in the Corona Borealis as they appeared at dawn on the spring equinox in 10,500 BC. It is interesting to note that the Corona Borealis would not have been visible from these temples during the 10th and 11th centuries when they were constructed.

Angkor Wat, built during the early years of the 12th century by Suryavaram II, honors the Hindu god Vishnu and is a symbolic representation of Hindu cosmology. Consisting of an enormous temple symbolizing the mythic Mt. Meru, its five inter-nested rectangular walls and moats represent chains of mountains and the cosmic ocean. The short dimensions of the vast compound are precisely aligned along a north-south axis, while the east-west axis has been deliberately diverted 0.75 degrees south of east and north of west, seemingly in order to give observers a three day anticipation of the spring equinox.

Buddhist pilgrimage to Angkor Wat

While the Europeans were writing at different times about the discovery of the "lost city", Angkor Wat and the other Angkor Temples were already known to the buddhist monks that cared for them from the 15th to the 19th centuries. It is in part thanks to them that Angkor Wat remains mostly intact. In the 16th century a Khmer court returned briefly to Angkor to restore it as a Buddhist shrine.

Angkor Wat Discovery

The Angkor Wat Discovery is the somewhat controversial concept that refers to the visit of French naturalist Henri Mouhot to Angkor Wat in 1860 and the publication of his travel notes in 1863. These memoirs had an umprecedented reception in Europe and Mouhot was credited with the discovery of the "lost city of Angkor". However, the French explorer was not the first European to visit Angkor Wat nor the first one to write about it. The earliest and most detailed account of Angkor was written by the Portuguese Diego de Couto in the mid 16th century and described how a Cambodian King came upon the ruins while hunting elephants. During the 15th and 16th centuries various Spanish missionaries traveled to the site and left written reports about their visits. In 1603 the Spaniard Gabriel Quiroga wrote "In 1507 a city was brought to light that had never been seen or heard of by the natives".

Moreover, the 17th century brings us accounts of Japanese settlements at Angkor. An inscription with Japanese calligraphic characters found on a pillar on the second floor of Angkor Wat dating back to 1632 is good proof of it. Another Japanese man, Kenryo Shimano, is the author of the oldest known Angkor Wat plan. During his travels to Angkor some time between 1632 and 1636 he drew a very detailed map of the temple.

(These are not my images, mine were lost a couple of years ago. But I wanted to include a page for my blog because it is such a spiritual and amazing place)

v sankaran nair 11.05.2019 05:29

a reading of my book entitled Nanchinadu Harbinger of Rice and Plough Culture in the Ancient World, will give you, new ideas on the pre anchor days.

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Latest comments

21.12 | 10:25

Is there anyway to sponsor or adopt a child..

28.02 | 03:36

Love it, I miss Myanmar very much —

30.10 | 10:48

Phnom Penh seems a good place to try and have fun. I would like to plan a tour fo there after mine

28.10 | 10:41

Kuala Lumpur seems a great place to try and have fun. I am thinking to visit this place after my to have fun.