Wat Buppharam (GPS: 5.42572, 100.31663) วัดบุปผาราม is a Thai Buddhist temple located at Perak Road, Penang. The name Wat Buppharam means "flower temple", and is one of the common names for temples in Thailand. It was founded in 1942 by Phothan Srikheaw, a Thai Buddhist monk, who acted as the first abbot of the wat. Wat Buppharam began as a small temple, but over the years, through donations and gifts from believers, was able to embark on several expansion programs. In the early 2000, it completed its gateway arch, which is one of the grandest entrance arches of a Buddhist temple in Penang. An image of Phothan Srikheaw is found at Wat Buppharam today.
Among the locals in Penang, the Wat Buppharam here is often called Temple of the Lifting Buddha, on account of the century-old Buddha image in the temple. Devotees believe that this statue has the ability to help them determine whether their desire will be fulfilled. If they were able to lift the statue while concentrating on their desire, that means there is likelihood the desire is achievable. To confirm it, they have to attempt to lift the statue a send time. If they fail to lift it again a second time, then the desire is indeed fulfillable.
Arch of Wat Buppharam from the inside (1 August 2006)
Among the structures in Wat Buppharam is a viharn or prayer hall. The viharn has a chedi linked to it. To the left of the viharn is an ubosot, flanked on either sides by undulating nagas. A short distance behind the ubosot is the rice pagoda, a square-base structure built in the form of a mondop.
Although founded as a Theravada Buddhist temple, Wat Buppharam embraces elements of other faiths from Mahayana to Taoism to Hinduism. Within the compound of the temple are the statues of the Kuan Yin (bodhisattva Avalokitesvara), the Ganesha, the Taoist Earth Deity, and spirit house containing the 4-faced buddha (the Hindu deity Brahma?).
Wat Buppharam is busiest during the Loy Krathong Festival. It is where the procession starts, with devotees bearing the colorful "krathong" or floral offerings, making their way from the temple at Jalan Perak, through Jalan Burma, Lorong Burma, passing Wat Chaiyamangkalaram and Dhammikarama, to Persiaran Gurney, where they are placed in the sea.
Ubosot of Wat Buppharam (7 October 2006)
Wat Buppharam is one of the two temples often involved in the staging of Thai festivals such as Loy Krathong and Songkhran.
8 Perak Road
10450 George Town, Penang
Phone: +60 4 227 7430
Frieze on the arch of Wat Buppharam (2 January 2005)
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