Palelai Buddha Hall

1 palelai2This hall is dedicated to the Palelai Buddha image.  The name Palelai is derived from the Pali name Parileyyaka.  It reminds us of the occasion when the Buddha went into retreat in the Parileyyaka Forest in search of solitude after the monks in Kosambi did not take his advice in settling a quarrel among themselves.  During the period of his retreat in the forest, he was cared for by a monkey and elephant until the monks finally came to their senses and were reconciled.
The Palelai Buddha Hall will be the centre of devotion as it will house the image of the Buddha sitting in Parileyyaka Forest receiving offerings from the two animals.  Moreover, this hall contains two giant wall murals each measuring 6mx4m.  One of them will depict the ‘Life of The Buddha’ and the other ‘The Principal Teachings of the Buddha’.  These hand-carved murals are meant to be reminders of the Buddha and his Teachings.  Created in classical Thai art form, they follow closely the artistic approach of the artists of the famous Borubudur chedi in Java, Indonesia.  These and the other Thai features of our building were created by renowned Thai artist Khun Teerayuut Daochanterk and his team of Thai artists.  They were specially commissioned to work on-site for almost a year.

We have also installed a large version of the yantra of the qualities of the Buddha at the window just behind the Palelai Buddha image.  The romanised Pali of the script along with English and Chinese translations are also incorporated so that members and devotees can read and reflect on them while visiting the hall.

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4 main places for Buddhist pilgrimage

In line with the purpose of the chedi being a place for Buddhist pilgrimage and reflection on the Life and Teachings of the Buddha, the hall also houses photographs and descriptions of the four main places for Buddhist pilgrimage –
Lumbini (the Buddha’s birth place), Bodhgaya (the place of Enlightenment), Sarnath (the place where the Buddha gave his first discourse/sermon), and Kusinara (the place where the Buddha passed away).   Our intention is to create a place for members and devotees to arouse confidence and faith in the Buddha and his Teachings, so much so that they will be inspired to take up the practice of the Teachings fully.

See more pictures of these places in our gallery.

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The Diamond Shield Yantra 
(Sacred Script of the Qualities of the Buddha)

1 diamond yantraAs mentioned, the Diamond Shield yantra is located on the window directly behind the Palelai Buddha image.  The yantra (sacred script) is written in ancient Khmer script and is known as “Yant Kropetch”.  It is a set of verses which Buddhists recite to reflect upon the qualities of the Buddha.  Luang Phor Parn of Wat Bang Nom Kho, Ayuthaya province, found the yantra in B.E. 2458 (1915) while he was making a pilgrimage to Suphanburi province, Thailand.

Shortly before he found this great yantra, he was meditating and an intuition arose in his mind that there was a very important plate buried in the main chedi of Wat Phra Sri Ratana Maha Dhat, Suphanburi province, waiting for him to recover.   Not long after that; he arrived at the chedi and found an ancient silver plate inscribed with the above yantra. The plate also states that for one who recites these verses everyday, his/her body will be covered with a “Diamond Shield” and will be safe from all dangers.  The person will never be destroyed by his/her enemies.  However, the enemy will be destroyed by some strange phenomena because of the reflective result from the powers of the “Diamond Shield”.

To read the yantra, begin from top to bottom (i.e. column-wise), left to right.  The romanised Pali version of the yantra is:

“Iti Piso Bhagava Araham Samma Sambuddho Vijja Carana Sampanno Sugato Lokavidu Anuttaro Purisa Damma Sarathi Sattha Deva Manussanam Buddho Bhagava ti”  meaning :

“He is a Blessed One, a Worthy One, a Rightly Self-Enlightened One, consummate in knowledge and conduct, one who has gone the good way, knower of the cosmos, unexcelled trainer of those who can be taught, Teacher of divine and human beings, Awakened, Blessed”.

As a fitting tribute to the memory of the Lord Buddha, this yantra is engraved in gold letterings on the window immediately behind the Palelai Buddha image.  It will allow visitors to the Palelai Buddha Hall to  take time to reflect upon the qualities of our Great Teacher while admiring the beauty of the manuscript, just as any good pilgrim will do while visiting the Buddhist pilgrimage sites.