A labor of love and devotion
“Only death can stop my dream, but cannot stop my project,” says Chalermchai Kositpipat, the creator of Wat Rong Khun whose intention is to create one of the most elegant temples in Chiang Rai, which he believes will give him “immortal life”.
The church shines in the sunlight.
There are always many people visiting the temple, even in the evening.
Elegant murals inside the church.
About 10 kilometers from the Chiang Mai-Chiang Rai-Phayao Junction, or about 13 kilometers south of Chiang Rai City, is “Wat Rong Khun”, still under construction in Chiang Rai, the hometown of its creator, Chalermchai, a very famous Thai artist.
The first 18 million baht and 5 years construction has only allowed 50% of the construction to be completed, but is enough to show anyone who visits Wat Rong Khun about Chalermchai and his followers’ faith in their religion and how much they have thrown themselves into this obligation as faithful Buddhists.
Wat Rong Khun is a white temple; inside it contains murals and paintings of the Buddha image and painted enamel ceramic floor that will take another 5 years to complete. The outside is being created with lime sculpture Thai designs decorated with small pieces of mirror that make the building sparkle and shine under the sunlight.
The impression of this temple is not only in its bright and splendid form but also the atmosphere it has. Even though the temple isn’t very far from the city, it is calm and peaceful even during the day.
It seems that the creator and his followers put all of their energies into creating this imaginative temple. Unlike many temples, Wat Rong Khun refuses to accept donations of more than 10,000 baht and the donors cannot have their names recorded on the buildings.
A Sculpture of a creature in Buddhist belief is decorated with small pieces of mirror.
Sparkles of the mirror respond to the Buddhists’ faith.
A small part of the church is still beautiful in the dusk.
Chalermchai wants to create this Buddhist art for his beloved homeland and all human beings by donating all of his ability and his life to the Dharma. Nobody knows when he will pass on but he insists that all the money be used to continue the project and his followers are ready to do that.
The second building is a pagoda, which has just been started behind the wat. There are eight buildings in the grand plan including the wat, pagoda, hermitage, temple, crematorium, monastery hall, museum, and pavilion will be created on the temple’s 7 rai area.
Wat Rong Khun’s white color indicates the religious gracefulness that attracts pure hearts of Buddhist people or anyone from other nationalities to touch and feel the aesthetics.