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Entries in National Museum of Cambodia (3)


More Monks at the Museum

More shots from my visit to the National Museum of Cambodia in Phnom Penh (see Monks at the Museum and The Monk and The Schoolgirl). Nice framing by the Traveller's Palm on the right, which is actually not really a palm, but a member of the bird of paradise family (Strelitziaceae) from Madagascar. The penetrating gaze of the monk in front is also nice. [NOTE: Ravenana madagascarensis, i.e. the Traveller's Palm, is said to be pollinated by ruffed lemurs. Which is, additionally, quite nice].


Monks at the Museum


A group of monks admiring the art at the National Museum of Cambodia in Phnom Penh. Something comforting about all the swatches of saffron gliding through the garden. More monks than tourists at the museum on this day.  


The Monk and The Schoolgirl


Walked down to the National Museum of Cambodia this afternoon. Undoubtedly the finest collection of Khmer sculpture in the world; spans over a millenia beginning with the pre-Angkorian period (approx. 500-800 A.D.). I spent over an hour gazing at the statues (thx, Phaeroon). Unfortunately, photography is strictly prohibited in the museum, so I am unable to show any of the sculptures.  I can, however, show some of the interactions that I noted in the courtyard. [NOTE: I assume that's a statue of Ganesh in the background].

Reminds me of the story of Tanzan and Ekido:

Tanzan and Ekido were once travelling together down a muddy road. A heavy rain was falling.

Coming around a bend, they met a lovely girl in a silk kimono and sash, unable to cross the intersection.

"Come on, girl," said Tanzan at once. Lifting her in his arms, he carried her over the mud.

Ekido did not speak again until that night when they reached a lodging temple. Then he no longer could restrain himself. "We monks don't go near females," he told Tanzan, "especially not young and lovely ones. It is dangerous. Why did you do that?"

"I left the girl there," said Tanzan. "Are you still carrying her?"

from 101 Zen Stories by Nyogen Senzaki (see Drink Tea, Stop War)