Ganesha statue with Buddhist element brings worshippers and tourists to Udon Thani

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Ganesha statue with Buddhist element brings worshippers and tourists to Udon Thani

Ganesha statue with Buddhist element brings worshippers and tourists to Udon Thani

WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 18, 2023

A unique statue of Ganesha in Udon Thani province is drawing worshippers from all over the country seeking blessings, in addition to tourists.

The Sri Suk Ganesha statue has been installed behind Udon Thani Vocational College in Muang district. Built in 2019 by the famed sculptor Rachan Saengthong, the statue mixes Hindu and Buddhist mythology. The statue portrays the Hindu god of luck with eight hands perched on Naga, the nine-headed king cobra who protected Gautama Buddha from the elements after his enlightenment.

Ganesha statue with Buddhist element brings worshippers and tourists to Udon Thani

Rachan said he had portrayed the Naga based on Udon Thani folklore of Naga King Sri Suttho, who is believed to have protected the city from great floods caused by the Mekong River since ancient times.

Although the statue was installed relatively recently compared to other spiritual attractions in the province, it has quickly become a tourist hotspot. Worshippers of both Ganesha and Naga from around the country are turning up in large numbers daily to light candles, scented incense sticks and offer garlands made of marigolds, Ganesha’s favourite flower.

Ganesha statue with Buddhist element brings worshippers and tourists to Udon Thani

The Sri Suk Ganesha statue is believed to grant blessings for success in business, a long and happy life, and wisdom.

Worshippers are advised to chant the provided mantra to show respect to the statue while offering various kinds of desserts, milk and fruits. According to Hindu belief, meat offerings are prohibited in a place of worship.

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