“WHEN you are old and grey and full of sleep, And nodding by the fire, take down this book, And slowly read, and dream of the soft look Your eyes had once, and of their shadows deep.” ― W.B. Yeats, The Collected Poems

Reflections of Buddha after years of rigorous penance

Reflections of Buddha after years of rigorous penance.
Wat Boromathat, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Thailand




Weekly Photo Challenge: Reflections


12 thoughts on “Weekly Photo Challenge: Reflections

    • Such images will always remind me of death. How could they not?

      But my understanding is that Buddha spent 6 years eating less and less whilst sitting under the hot sun and through the rainy seasons before finally realizing that the way to enlightenment was not through such exacting penance. He broke is fast, the story goes, after a girl came bearing pudding. Pudding! Well, why not?

      So, the image is not about death.(but still is to me) And, I guess, look at the erect back, the upright head and the arms held out, not resting; there is strength there.

      • Yes, I see those things too. Maybe it represents suffering more than anything else; a form of consolation to those undergoing deprivation. Really interesting image and such a contrast from the fat jolly Buddha usually seen. It stopped me in my tracks, that’s for sure.

    • Hi Tina,
      I have had cause to think about death more than I would like recently and I can see why you would find the image and poem a little depressing. I’ve find both of some comfort, though. A little unsettling sure, but of comfort.

      Skeleton Buddhas are relatively common in SE Asia; I first photographed one in about 2001 and liked the ‘old fella’ so much that his photo still sits on the kitchen wall!

      Thanks for the comment.

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