journal indo-china 2008

Indo-China 2008 Travel Journal

Angkor Wat

Oct 19, 2008 Sun
03:00Angkor Wat
08:38angkor wat
Built in 900AD to 1300AD
It took 100 years to built. Built around early 12th century.
A temple dedicated to Vishnu.
65 meter for the first level
below Meru is a thousand mountains
below is the ocean - moats
below is the earth
body of a serpent
temples oriented to four direction
believe in karma

carvings were created after rocks are locked
some are pre carved
sandstones here are not carved
only pillar in front are carved
08:45 ancient ruin
08:51 angkor east entrance
09:19 churning of the milky ocean
09:40 angkor main towers
09:41 temple walls
09:42 angkor steps
09:44 angkor tower
09:44volcanic rock foundation
09:53 king of kalis
09:57 angkor monkey
10:02 angkor courtyard
10:05 center of universe
10:07 hall of hundred buddha or tourists
10:10 angkor balloon
10:11 angkor balloon and palm tree
10:29 stag beetle fight
10:29 stag beetle
10:30 stag beetle death match
10:30 stag beetle fight
10:30 killer stag beetle
10:30 stag beetle
10:31 beetle boys
10:34 angkor wat
10:35 hello angkor
10:59 angkor wat ballon
11:10 phnom bakheng
11:27Bayon temple
11:33 elephant terrace
11:35 stone lion in angkor thom
11:35 elephant sculpture
11:36 elephant terrace
11:36 leper king
11:39 hand of leper king
11:41 elephant terrace
11:43 stone man
11:44 charoits in the khmer-cham war
11:45 elephant trunks
11:48 garuda
11:50 elephant trunks
11:51 elephant trunks in elephant terrace
11:52 baphuon
11:59Bayon temple
pre: leaper king
elephant terrace
Baphon temple
12:04 bayon temple
12:10 face of jayavarman vii
12:10 bayon temple
12:11 faces of buddha and jayavarman
12:11 bayon
12:15 charoit of war
12:18 jayavarman vii
12:18 side face of jayavarman
12:19 jayavarman
12:19 jayavarman
12:21 more faces
12:22 dancing apsara
12:24 broken face
12:27 buddha face
12:27 twin faces of jayavarman
12:28 bayon temple roof
12:29 thousand faces
12:32 bayon temple complex
12:37 south gate of angkor thom
12:39 demons of churning of the milky sea
12:39 angels of churning of the milky sea
left angels
right demons
tug of war of the milky galaxy
12:55lunch before Angkor wat
13:10Vegetable curry with coconut
Cost 4.5US$, the food is excellent
It serves in a coconut shell
13:15 bbq suki and seafood
13:15 lunch before angkor wat
13:57doing laundry
6 pair socks
4 under
2 pants
1 t shirt
3 shirts
15:21National Museum
Entry: 12 US$. It is as expensive as a western museum, I almost thought it was a scam. But like the salesman say, it's good. I spent 5 hour to milk the museum dry. It's a well spent 12US$.
15:26briefing room
15:26room of a thousand Buddha
15:36history room
This is what I have learnt from the National Museum:

Period of Cambodian History:
Angkorian 9th to 13th century
Post Angkorian 14th to 20th AD
Fu Nan 1st to 600 AD
Chenla 600 to 800 AD

Vishnu has four arms: front top right to down left: disc for fire, shell for water, ball for earth and mace for wind

Brahma is God of Creation.
Vishnu is for preservation.
Shiva is for dissolution.

Vishnu has 10 reincarnations, including Rama and Christina
Narasimha is the fourth, liked a lion, defeat demon Hiranyakashipu.
He rides Garuda, a half bird half man creature.

Buddhism has 2 vehicles: Hinayana: lesser Vehicle, Mahayana greater vehicle.

Mahayana believes in the existence of many Bodhisattvas, while Hinayana believes in only one.

Indra, god of war is east, use lightening bolt, ride 3 headed elephant rose from sea of milk.

Yama, lord of death is south

Kala is the lion head thing

Linga has 3 parts
top circular is shiva
mid Octagonal means Vishnu
cubic base means 4 faces of Brahma and four directions
if it has a face, it is call Mukhalinga

Yama lord of death

naga important in Cambodia because it was formed by the marriage of the daughter of a naga king
Vishnu also slept on a naga before the churning of the sea of milk
naga is also the string in tug of war
naga has 7 or 5 heads, always odd number
17:03Great Kings of Khmer In Angkor period
King: Jayavarman II
year: 802 AD to 805 AD
temples: Ak Yum (a brick stepped pyramid)
style: Kulen
Treated as the first Emperor of the Khmers Angkor Kingdom. He died at around 805AD, and received the posthumous name of Paramesvara, "the supreme lord of Shiva." Everybody wrote about him but he didn't leave any writing himself. So basically a mysterious figure.

King: Indravarman I
year: 877 to 890 AD
temples: Preah ko, Bakong
style: Preah Ko
Indravarman I was not too legitimate at birth and had to fight his was to power. He was the nephew of the Queen.
He was credited for the building program at Angkor. He set the foundations for the future Angkorian kings to follow. He also built a big reservoir.

King: Yasovarman I
year: 889 to 910 AD
temples: Lolei , Phnom [[Bakeng]], East Baray
style: bakeng
The son of Indravarman I, he beat his brother to the throne.
He moved capital from Hariharalaya to Yashodharapura where it remained there for 500 years.

King: Jayavarman IV
year: 928 to 941 AD
temples: Koh Ker
style: Koh Ker
This guy also had to fight his way to the throne.

King: Rajendravarman II
year: 944 to 968 AD
temples: Banteay Srei, Pre Rup, East Mebon
style: Pre Rup

King: Suryavarman I
year: 1010 to 1050 AD
temples: Prasat Preah Vihear on Dangrek Mountain, and Prasat Phimeanakas, West Baray
style: Khleang
Suryavarman I was a Buddhist who was said be of Malaysian origin.
He claimed to be the son of the Brahmin Kaundinya and Princess Soma.
After nine years of war, Suryavarman I won the throne.

King: Udayadityavarman II
year: 1050 - 1066 A.D.
temples: Baphuon, Sdok Kak Thom
style: Baphuon
was the successor of Suryavarman I but not his son; he descended from Yasovarman I's spouse. He built the Baphuon Temple to honor the god Shiva, but some of the sculptures are dedicated to Buddha.

King: Suryavarman II
year: 1113 A.D. to 1145-1150 A.D.
temples: Angkor Wat,Beng Mealea
style: Angkor Wat
He is the Angkor Wat guy. He reunited the empire. He wroshipped Vishnu rather than Shiva. He tried to invade Vietnam (Dai-Viet) with the Chams but failed. But most of his other campaigns were successful. He also established formal embassy relation with China.

King: Jayavarman VII
year: 1125 - 1215 AD
temples: Angkor Thom, Bayon, Preah Khan (for his father), Ta Prohm (for his mother), Ta Som, Neak Pean
style: Bayon
He was the main guy in Angkor Wat. Known as the Buddha King. He defeated the Chams and was responsible for most of the tourist attractions around Angkor Wat. He built 121 rest houses and 102 hospitals.
two types: foliage and scene
foliage branch usually ends with Makara, monster that sinks ship
17:50nine deities
surya - sun on chariot of horses
chandra - moon sit on pedestal
yama - on buffalo
varuna - god of west ride goose
indra - east, ride 3 headed elephant
kubera - god of wealth and north
agni - god of fire , south west ride sheep
rahu ? god of eclipses, hidden by cloud
ketu ? god of comets, ride on lion

18:00three gods
Brahma, I'm not sure who his wife is.
Vishnu, wife Laksmi
Shiva, wife Uma or Pravati
18:03Angkor wat
according to George Coedes, is a replica of the Universe in stone and represents an earthly model of the cosmic world.

The main tower rises from the centre of the monument and symbolizes the mythical mount meru, situated at the center of the Universe. Its five towers correspond to the five peaks of mount meru, the outer gallery of the monument represents the mountains at the edge of the world, and the surrounding moat represents the oceans beyond.

temple face west because it is dedicated to Vishnu who is the god of the west
18:18Angkor wat galleries
18:22the churning of the ocean of milk
from the book Mahabharata
devas held tail
asuras (demons) held head
the naga is Vasuki
devas and demons fought for Amrita (the Elixir for Immortality) but no result
so Vishnu asked them to work together.
so they churn the milk of ocean
used mount madara as the pivot and Basuki as the rope
later mountain sank so Vishnu incarnated himself as the tortoise Kurma and used his back to support the mountain.

before producing the Amrita (elixir of immortality), the ocean of milk was churned for another 1000 years
also produced Lakshmi (wife of Vishnu), the elephant Airavata, the horse Ucchaishravas, a wishing tree and a lovely Apsaras.

Once produced, fight between devas and asuras to get Amrita. Vishnu intervened and helped gods to win. When peace was made, Indra was reinstalled as the king of gods.
10 reincarnations
tatsya the fish
kurma the turtle
varaha the boar
narasimha the human with lion head
vamana the dwarf
parasurama the man with axe
rama from the reamkerti epic
and kalkin (man with horse head)

Lokeshvara (buddha of compassion) also got 4 arms, holding rosary, book, vase and lotus

Rama the 7, wife sita, from the book Ramayana. Rama means the perfect man.
usually has four heads
20:06BBQ Suki and seafood
located across the national museum
not too many veggie choice here, actually none
but I special ordered a veggie fried rice
and lychee drink
I suspect seafood buffet here shouldn't be too bad, but I guess it is not too vegetarian friendly
I am not too good at picking restaurant on this trip
20:28 veggie fried rice
pretty presentable
2.5US$ cheap too
23:59Angkor Way Hotel
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