Many Different Buddhas
As I go around Thailand I can’t help but notice there are different kinds of Buddhas. I think this is odd for which one do they believe is true and which one do they pray to?
The answer is they pray to all of them for they are afraid to offend one and also because each Buddha represents something different to pray to in certain situations. Example – you can’t call on one for protection if that isn’t the right god, you need to call on the protection Buddha for he has the powers.
The three most popular Buddhas I see around Bangkok are these.
#1. Big Ears which stands for wisdom and more importantly to live long. If it’s right hand is up that Buddha is also for protection and if you have concerns you can confide into that one. If it’s hand is up and making an okay symbol, it also will bring inner peace into your soul.
#2. Fat Buddha means if you pray to this one you will be well taken care of for the rest of your life and you and your family will never go hungry. It also shows you’re wealthy and will have great riches. This is a big concern for some Thai people for it’s hard to find work.
#3. Skinny Buddha with Four Heads means that this Buddha went on a diet so he could live long. He dieted for many days helping the people with their patience and self discipline to learn this on their own. This one is by far the most popular Buddha in Bangkok for this one knows about your past, present, future, and after life. You go around praying to each head so he can hear and know everything about your life.
So there are several Buddhas, not just one Buddha. It gets rather confusing but the best way to explain it is we have Christianity and many denominations within Christianity such as Methodist, Nazarene, Baptist, Pentecostal etc. Muslims also have their own Buddhas along with other countries. China even has women Buddhas who are white and colorful called Kuan Yim.
If you would like to study this religion you honestly cannot. They don’t have a book like we, Christians, have The Bible or the Muslims have The Quran. It’s simply passed down from generation to generation. You sacrifice and pray daily not really knowing if it’s true.
I’m thankful that I can call upon the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and be saved not having to worry about if He’s true, not having to worry about if He’s the “right one”, and knowing that there is only one God.
*The information gathered here is not from books or off the internet but from talking to my Thai friends who are Buddhist.