Do you know Ankor Wat?

Ankor Wat view at 5:30am before the Sunset

Visually, architecturally and artistically breathtaking Angkor Wat is the centerpiece of any visit to the Temples in Angkor area. For Cambodia nation, Angkor Wat is icon as the flag of Cambodia presents 5 towers of the Wat.

Between the 9th and 14th centuries the Khmers built the temple into the heart of the empire. Now the remained stone and brick temples, a testament to the power and influence of the Hindu and Mahayana Buddhist faiths that permeated Asia from India.

                                                                                         Akgkor Wat after Sunset

In both Hindu and Buddhist cosmologies, the center of the Universe is Mount Meru, home of the Gods.

Mount Meru photo by Andrea Spaccatini

Just this mythical summit, the axis of the world, penetrates the heavens, so the temple creates a link between the world of man and Gods. The most sacred mountain of all, in western Tibet, this is Shiva’ s abode and ultimately the inspiration for Khmer State temples.

The materials of Art have a profound influence on both execution and subject. At Angkor the medium choice of for the building was sandstone.Created by the compression and fusion of beds of sand over geological time, its main ingredients is quartz in tiny rounded grains, cemented by silica, iron,lime and clay, and the composition of this cement determines its hardness and color.  While sandstone weathers well, after several hundred years it has suffered fr physical abrasion, from mosses, lichens and fungi preying on its surface, some of which secrete acid and invade the stone’s micro-pores, and from bacteria the stone gets oxides.

                                                                                The King’s pool at Angkor Wat

Similar to Woodworking technique applied to Stone

A Buddhist monk from Vietnam visits Angkor Temples in great excitement

The Khmers explored this rich symbolism in sculpture, in bas-relief carving and even in architecture, for the major temples were designed as microcosmos of the universe.

South Gate of Angkor Thom

Ta Prohm

“With its millions of knotted limbs, the forest embraces the ruins with violent love.” Elie Faue, Mon Periple.

                                                                                    Giant Trees from Temple Ruins

Seeds carried by birds, germinate in the towers and gallery roofs down to the ground. As the roots extend and thicken, they pry blocks of stones apart.

used sources: Angor / Icon Micheal Freeman , Siem Reap Angkor Guide

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