Ta Prohm was built under the reign of the powerful king of Angkor, Jayavarman VII, in mid-12th century to early 13th century (1186). It was consecrated to Buddhist cult and dedicated to his Royal Mother Prajnaparamita, whom the statue was placed in the central tower. Ta Prohm is one of the most interesting temples and a state of beauty. It was delightedly researched when discovered but now is found abandoned with regret.
All of you who have arrived at Ta Prohm will find an amazing place full of mystery and romance. It comprises the special characteristics of nature such as the giant trees growing over the temple which takes over the ancient place. This is the greatest view in the world. Moreover, it helps visitors to understand how some of the temples in the Angkor area look like after five to six hundred years since they have been abandoned.
Ta Prohm: University for the students in the Angkor Empire
Ta Prohm was a Buddhist Monastery, where the king or people used to visit for adoration. Additionally, it was a university for the students during the Angkor Empire. There you will find many holes which were filled by gems and gold leaves, and at the second level there are more than 200 statues of Buddha. Plenty of big trees are found today on the temple and its giant roots are all over the place. It is unbelievable. :)
The trees begun growing at the temple naturally setting its roots on both sides of the building. This formation amazingly makes both trees and temple’s walls to support each other over time. This is one of the greatest things in life. Because those trees not always grew from human intervention, but they germinated from the rich combination of the flora and the weather, the jungle of the Angkor city comprises about a hundred different kind of plants and vegetation. You will find for instance gum-trees about 600 year years old.
On the west gate of Ta Prohm, you can see the carving of Garuda in the same style of those at Preah Khan and Banteay Kdei. In the first gallery was the second Monastery. People believe at that time it was preferred to do the cremation outside of the temple and then take the ashes to enshrine here.
In the third gallery it was placed a statue of Buddha. At that time there were 18 chief monks, more than 2.000 congregation and 600 dancing girls around the place. In the central tower it was placed a statue of Prajnaparamita. From all these Buddha carvings many were destroyed, except the carving of Apsara.
When I visit the Ta Prohm temple I feel so proud of the ancestors in the Angkor empire who built so many temples in the Angkor area. And all of this creates the greatest history of Cambodian people and it will stay immortal forever to its visitors.
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