A temple mural painting depicting Thailand’s prime minister Prayut Chan-ocha and deputy prime minister Prawit Wongsuwan as one of Lord Buddha’s many temptations has been ordered to be removed.
The painting was discovered at Wat Nong Tao in Uthai Thani province, where officials were previously sent to investigate a religious mural of popular culture figure Sitang Buathong pointing towards an orange while paying respect to the Buddha, which was deemed as inappropriate by religious authorities.
Reporters later revealed that they found a similar depiction of Prayut Chan-cha and Prawit Wongsuwan on the other side of the Ubosot wall by a different artist, with the deputy minister painted with multiple watches on his wrist.
The mural featured the two ministers drowning alongside a depiction of Phra Mae Thorani — a deity from Buddhist mythology — twisting her hair during the encounter scene in Buddhism.
In Buddhist myths, this scene was when the Lord Buddha fought a great battle with the Demon God Mara, or The Evil One, who was jealous and wanted to stop him from reaching enlightenment. In doing so, Mara attacked the then Bodhisattva Siddhartha Guatama by tantalizing him with various temptations — lust, greed, anger, doubt, and so forth.
As a response, the Bodhisattva then stretched out his right hand and touched the Earth, summoning her to be his witness. The earth deity, Phra Mae Thorani, emerged in the form of a beautiful woman, who then wrung the waters of detachment out of her hair to drown Mara and his various temptations. The Bodhisattva was later freed and attained enlightenment, becoming the Lord Buddha.
Among the temptations, the painting also featured various modern-day characters such as Thanos, Darth Vader, and Lord Voldemort.
While the temple was able to save the painting of meme-star Sitang Buathong, Prayut and Prawit were removed.
(Picture Credit: Manager Online)