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Wat Luang Phor Sodh Dhammakayaram
16th December 2006

Grand Master Yap Cheng Hai and Master Yap Boh Chu were in Thailand on 16th December 2006 to provide consultation services for Wat Luang Phor Sodh Dhammakayaram, a renowned Buddhist temple located near Bangkok, which is preparing to construct Phra Maha Chedi Somdej, a pagoda that will be used to house a complete set of Lord Siddharta Buddha’s relics – both actual and replicas – as well as to hold high level meditation and major ceremonies.

Three representatives from the temple accompanied the Feng Shui masters during their consultation, which lasted from morning till late evening. The venerable Abbot of the temple honoured them with his presence and briefed them on the scope of the consultation and the primary use of the pagoda. In essence, the consultation focussed on the entrances of the yet to be built pagoda and the flow of roads and canals around and leading to the pagoda. Grand Master Yap and Master Yap also looked at the official residence of the Abbot of the temple and its administrative offices.

From Feng Shui’s point of view, the temple is generally in harmony with its surroundings. Still, there was room for improvement and suggestions for improvement were made during this trip. Some improvement recommendations were also made earlier by Masako Tsuruta, a Yap Cheng Hai Academy student currently based in Bangkok.

After this trip, the next step will be to view the amended architectural and engineering plans. Grand Master Yap will likely make an actual site visit when the pagoda site has been pegged out for the foundation.

For those keen to know more about the temple and pagoda, here are some interesting bits about them. Wat Luang Phor Sodh Dhammakayaram is one of the largest temples in Thailand – it ranks among the top 40 temples of the country (out of possibly 10,000 temples of all sizes). Built 20 years ago, the temple stood on what used to be agricultural land. Tonnes of earth were dug out to provide the foundation for the temple structures and the resulting holes filled with water became the canals around the temple. The canals are home to various species of fish – among them the giant Mekong catfish, one of the largest fresh water fish in the world.

As for the Phra Maha Chedi Somdej, its construction will hopefully take about 4 years to complete. Once completed, the pagoda will reach the height of approximately 108m. It will certainly be a sight to behold.

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