“What does a Buddhist temple in Taiwan have to do with anime?”, you might ask. We discovered something interesting and instead of our usual Japanese culture segment we bring you an interesting story of a temple inspired by a well-loved anime character.
It all started ten years ago when a flood hit the 700-year-old temple and damaged some of the murals. The monks hired a painter to repair the murals and you know some painters are very… eccentric. He did something that was way out radical and super sugoi…
You see when we picture Buddhist temples, we always think of monks, Buddha statues, and the lazy sway of incense in the wind. But the painter had other plans. He added Doraemon images to the murals.
The monks were very surprised at what they saw. Let’s hear it from a monk of the Wat Sampa Siw temple, Pladkantaphat Kittimetee. Pladkantaphat said: ’We never knew the painter would add Doraemon to the wall painting. We learnt that from news reports and then saw the little creature ourselves. We thought it was lovely and didn’t want to remove it. Besides, it has attracted a lot of children and young people.’
It is kind of interesting to see images of Doraemon appearing in scenes of the Lord Buddha’s past lives and the afterlife. While there are a few people that might not take to the idea of an anime character part of murals in temples, the monks like it and a little happiness is always an awesome gift.
Here is the Bangkok post article about the temple: http://goo.gl/ZNBCXh
Here is footage of a news article about the mural: http://goo.gl/G35J1Z