Sanpathong - Wat Pa Charoen Tham - The Sariam Marsh Legend

Discussion in 'Northern Thailand - Road Trip Reports' started by DavidFL, Aug 6, 2014.

  1. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator Staff Member

    Sanpathong Attractions

    Wat Pa Charoen Tham & The Sariam Marsh Legend

    An interesting temple with a bit of a difference.
    I recently stumbled across an odd image from a temple, south-west from Sanpathong.

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    The image.

    This caught my interest immediately & off I went in search of the temple - Wat Pa Charoen Tham.

    It wasn't difficult to find once you know where - adjoining the Saturday Sanpathong Talad Nut (motorbike- buffalo market) on R108.

    The grounds are huge & they once had a lot of money, plus someone has wanted to make a show piece for Buddhism, teaching kids & people about Buddha.


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    Last edited: Jul 7, 2016
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  3. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator Staff Member

    I like it when they have a few signs so you can understand what you are supposed to be looking at & understanding
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    Here's a story about 2 spoiled rich delinquent kids
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    Last edited: Jul 7, 2016
  4. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator Staff Member

    There's also an incredible number of different Buddhas, that I found amusing if not interesting - oh for more signs in English.

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    Sadly many of them need a bit of a clean up.

    The giant reclining Buddha
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    And the original reason for going..

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    The interior with Buddha images.

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    but all locked up.
    There's another story there....
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2016
  5. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator Staff Member

    There's also a "concrete wildlife park" in the grounds as well
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    something to amuse the kids on the weekend, while Mum & Dad are at the huge Talad Nut market next door on Saturdays; so the monk sweeping up told me with a smile.
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2016
  6. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator Staff Member

    Now the smiling monk sweeping up the grounds was quite a character.

    I was about to leave, thinking I had photographed everything when the monk asked me what was the English word for Gop - Frog.
    Have you seen & taken any photos of the frogs.
    I looked around for some big concrete statues & saw none.

    No come this way, the frogs are over here. The monk proudly showed me the way

    And voila a small concrete pond filled with multitudes of live frogs.

    Then under orders I took photos of his beloved frogs....

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    Indeed it was a nice amusing day at the Wat.
     
  7. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator Staff Member

    Almost packed ready to go I noticed some more statues over by the entrance wall in an overgown section.
    Hello hello what's this one....

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    Another strange one I thought??

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    Then stumbling around in the undergrowth I found a sign:

    THE LEGEND OF SARIAM MARSH

    In July 1846 the village temple Wat Sri Don Chai collapsed & 650 houses were swept into the river.

    Only one house remained - that of a spinster.

    The reason for the villagers misfortune was that they ate a large eel that they had caught in Nong Ban Rong Kut. The eel was so huge that when the villagers dragged it through several villages it created a water way.

    The spinster whose house was not swept away did not partake in eating the eel - when a bowl of eel soup was offered to her, she removed the eel meat, believing that if she did eat it she would not be able to marry & conceive.

    On that same day a young man visited the village to see his lover, he borrowed her ring & saw a wonderful apparition - the sky filled with storm clouds, thunder & lightning. The young man persuaded his lover to leave the village with him on horseback.
    They had only gone to or three steps when the village collapsed behind the. This startled his horse & his lover fell to the ground. The village immediately stopped falling and it was given the new name of Nong Bua Kham.

    The people of Sanpathong district, particularly in the area of Wat Pa Charoen Tham believe that they should preserve this legend & the accompanying beliefs. To forget them would bring disaster to the village. Accordingly they built a statue of a large white eel being drawn by villagers.

    The Concrete Eel
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    Villagers hauling in the Eel
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    The Sariam Marsh is 200 metres west of Wat Pa Charoen Tham. The marsh used to be 400 rai wide, but it is now only about 170 rai as the villagers have taken land for farming.
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    Ride around the pond & there are some magnificent residences. Some people have all the luck.

    Wonder down to Sanpathong one day & take a look - Wat Pa Charoen Tham is worth a visit.

    Cheers.
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2016
  8. SilverhawkUSA

    SilverhawkUSA Ol'Timer

    Interesting. I never heard of that one before. I will give it a look. Still trying to figure out exactly the moral to the eel story. :shock:
     

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