In Part 1, we have explored the origins and the 3 main configurations of Jaydee found in Thailand. From these main configurations, various styles and shapes had resulted over the centuries. They shall be explored in detail in this article.
Different styles or shapes of Jaydee
- Jaydee Song Prasat
At the inception of the Lanna empire, Pagodas in the Jaydee Song Prasat were popular. These had multiple floors, with arches carved into each that enshrined images of the Buddha. Later the “Ruean That” (see Reference 2, Level 5) was developed, and began to replace these as the predominant style.
2. Jaydee Song Prang
A Pagoda shaped like corn flowers. These were influenced by the style of the Khmer palace, had a slightly slimmer shape. They are popularly known as Phra Prang
- Song Sikhorn(Mountains), are a traditional pagoda, created ccording to the original Khmer pattern, which reflected the Khmer belief of multiple worlds congregating around the base of Mount Meru.
- Song Nga Niemresemble a short, straight piece of ivory. They are believed to be of Thai origin, and have evolved significantly from their original form, which emerged during the Ayutthaya period.
- Song Fuk Khao Phodare thin and long, shaped like ears of corn. They were a unique feature of the early Rattanakosin Prang(Jaydee).
- Song Jom Hae, resembling a raised net.
3. Jaydee Song Rakhang
There are many varieties of Chedi in Thailand and may be classified according to several distinct styles. The bell-shaped style is the most popular. The defining feature of this type of pagoda is that it looks like a bell supported by a flat lower base.
Above this base lies the Ong Rakhang (the body of pagoda), and above the Ong Rakhang, Ban lang (throne), Plong Chanai (see Reference 2, Level 9), and Plee Yod (see Reference 2, Level 10) which continue in succession upwards, forming a conical shape.
Jaydee Song Rakhang
4. Jaydee Song Kreung
Jaydee Song Rakhang fall into 2 broad categories, namely Jaydee Song Rakhang Klom
Above the Ong Rakhang is the Ban Lang (throne room), and above the Ong Rakhang is another Bau Glum Thao, as well as Plee (see Reference 2, Level 10).
There are some variants. Some examples forgo the lotuses (Bau Glum and Bau Glum Thao below and above the Ong Rakhang), but include the Plong Chanai (body of the parasol).
In addition, Jaydee Song Kreung is often decorated in the upper part of the Ong Rakhrang, with a pattern called Bau Kor Seu
5. Jaydee Song Phum Khao Bin
The unique characteristics of “Jaydee Song Phum Khao Bin” are the result of the incorporation of various architectural elements into a single, unified aesthetic, resulting in an entirely new style of Pagoda. This pagoda goes by several names, but the most widely-used one was inspired by the visage of earlier Pagoda styles resembling lotus buds, such as Jaydee Yod Song Dok Bau Toom
6. Jaydee Yor Moom
The name “Jaydee Yor moom” possesses attributes that make it easily distinguishable from other “bell-shaped pagodas”. The number of angles incorporated into its design is usually also reflected in its name, as “Jaydee Yor moom Mai Sibsong”
The Important Jaydee in Thailand
In 1942, the Government of Thailand gazette for special commendation of 8 Pagodas, termed as “Jom Jaydee”
1. Phra That Hariphunchai
2. Phra Si Ratana Mahathat Chaliang
4. Phra That Phanom
5. Phra Si Ratana Mahathat Lawoe
6. Phra Maha Chedi Chai Mongkol
7. Phra Pathomm Chedi
8. Phra Borommathat Chedi
These pagodas are revered by all Thais, and also serve as important sites for religious tourism.
The style of Pagodas continues to evolve, as each successive generation of temple devotees and leaders seeks to distinguish theirs from the rest. Some elements of ancient pagoda design, as well as their expansive size, have stayed the same, as they form the basis for the religious worship and activities that happen within.
Pagodas are sometimes built by individuals to act as mausoleums for the remains of their loved ones. These Pagodas are usually much smaller in stature and are modeled after the important pagodas of Thailand (Jom Jaydee) described earlier. These are usually 2-3 meters high, cast from cements, then painted or decorated with glass or colored tiles. These are often found scattered around the area of a temple.
As much as Pagodas serve a religious function, they are also a reflection of the trends, history, and culture of their generations. As Pagoda design continues to evolve, so too, does their accompanying symbolism, and the beliefs and significance that come with it.
1) The first stupa(s) (pagodas) that contained the relics of the Buddha were mentioned in the scriptures of Buddhism named “Maha-parinibbana Sutta”. It was mentioned in it that the Buddha’s cremated relics were divided into 8 equal parts by Dona the Brahmin, who had stepped in just in time to stop a conflict that arises from a quarrel among the Kings who had congregated there to claim the Buddha’s relics. The relics were divided into 8 parts and a stupa was built in Rajagha, Vesali, Kapilavatthu, Allakappa, Ramagama, Vethadipa, Pava, and Kusinārā.
Another 2 stupas were erected; one for the urn (the vessel used for collecting and dividing the relics) in Kushinagar and one for the embers in Pipphalivana.
One interesting legend states that during the distribution of the relics, Dona seized his opportunity and hid 3 canine teeth of the Buddha in his turban, between his toes, and inside his clothing. The one in the turban was secretly taken by Lord Indra and worshipped in his realm, the Tāvatiṁsa Heaven, the second was secretly taken by Naga King, Jayasena, and the third was also secretly stolen, by a Ghandara (The Doṇagajjita 2:609 and The Dhātuvaṁsa).