Tag Archive | Angkor

Getting in love with the Khmer soul

Albeiror24 in Bayon 2007On September 2007 I did my first guides at the temples after studying their history, architectural settings and meanings, something without ending.

I compare the Angkorean temples to the Egyptian archeology. I dream Cambodia and its donors would invest more in Angkorean research to create an authentic science like the Egyptology. The issue is that, to my perspective, the temples are being exploited sonly for commercial purposes. The maintenance is done like ‘let’s prepare it for the international tourism.’ But how many schools of archeology we have in Cambodia? Read More…

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Waiting the International Student Identity Card in Cambodia

When I visited museums in Italy, Holy Land, Egypt and Ireland, I could get in using my then International Student Identity Card. I find it very modern and civilized, plus a right of education. If a Cambodian young person happens to visit the National Museum of El Cairo, it is enough to apply for the ISIC and he or she will enter free. Well, it is not understand by Apsara Authority, Sokha Hotel and Sokimex that administrate the Angkor temples. For them, every foreigner MUST paid 20 US dollars for one day, 40 for three and 60 for a week. Read More…

Indian replica of Angkor Wat

India is building a replica of Angor Wat. There’s nothing to fear for our original Cambodian Angkor Wat at all. Even if the replica is set to be biggest than ours, the Patna Angkor Naga will be, surely, so anonymous to many as the 30 replicas of the Tower Eiffel or the numberless replicas of the Statue of the Liberty. See in this forum the Chinese Wall’s replicas too with amazing photos. Now well, the Mahavir Mandir Trust, an organization known in the Bihar State for the construction of hospitals and religious compounds, is the responsible of the ambitions work. It will take about ten years – Angkor Wat took about 30 during the 12th century – and it will cost 20 million US dollars !!!   It will be located 40 kilometers outside Patna. It is understandable that a country where Hindu majority would like ‘to have’ the biggest Hindu complex of the world, that it’s not in India, but in Cambodia ! Anyway, Angkor Wat or Angkor Nagar was dedicated to Vishnu, but it was converted to Buddhism some centuries after. What it cannot be understood is to spend 20 million US dollars for a replica in a country with so big social gap as India.

Update: Here in Asia Times a good development of the growing discussion. A very good description with some curious reactions like the one of a university students at Phnom Penh worry for the lost of tourism if the replica is made – it seems that for this boy Angkor Wat is just a tourist attraction like Disneyland!!! -, the optimistic perspective of Sombo Manara, the deputy chairman of the history department at the Royal University of Phnom Penh, who says that ‘before we thought that all culture – like Brahmanism and Buddhism – came from India to Cambodia. But now why don’t we feel happy that our Cambodian culture is spreading back to India?’ and the funny answer of Acharya Kishore Kunal, the Mahavir Mandir Trust’s secretary, who never has come to Cambodia, who said that he is ‘slightly scared‘ to come because ‘some people [in Cambodia] want to throw shoes on me…’ Who!!! Please…

What Cambodians say about it? I asked my students to let a comment in our Facebook group – mostly in Khmer – about the news and we got the following reactions: Read More…

Angkor National Museum

A quick tour through the Khmer Civilization

According to Mr.Wichai Poolprasert, Sales and Marketing Manager, you can do the tour through the Museum in minimum one hour. However, I consider that one hour will be just the appetizer. Read More…

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