It is a four faced god from Hinduism. Everyday tourists and locals flock in to pray at this shrine located in one of the busiest intersections in Bangkok. It's a good place to see traditional Thai dance as the devotees' way of showing respect once their wishes come true.
According to urban legend, once the wish you'd made at Erawan Shrine been fulfilled, you MUST return to the shrine and realize your promise. If not, a series of 'unfortunate' events might happen on the wisher. Therefore, becareful what you wish and promise.
Erawan Shrine is something different. The shrine was built to appease the restless spirits during the construction of the Erawan Hotel in 1956. It was believed that the foundation was laid on the wrong date and the spirits became angry and caused problems. The Erawan Hotel was later destroyed and in the late 1980's the Hyatt Erawan was built in its place.
Located near the Hyatt Erawan, the shrine features a four-faced Brahma statue. Worshipers hire dance troupes that wait at the shrine to pay tribute in return for good fortune. The shrine actually is not very interesting unless one of the dance troupes is performing...but when they do, it's very cool!
The shrine was the scene of great controversy in March 2006 when a mentally-ill man destroyed the statue and was then beaten to death by angry bystanders. The shrine temporarily closed but in May 2006, a new statue constructed with a mixture of new precious metals and fragments of the old statue was put on display.
something new for me as my collegue who lived here show me where thai people pay their prayer or wish...here you need to tell the monk you name and what so ever your prayer or wish then there a group of thai dancer will dance your prayer or wish which in front of the shrine.
In 1953, the Thai Hotel and Tourism Co. started the construction of Erawan Hotel. When it was near completion in 1956, the management consulted an astrologer for an auspicious date for its grand opening. As it turned out, the astrologer pointed out that the date when the foundation stone was laid was not suitable, and advised that a Brahman shrine and a guardian spirit shrine should be built to correct the error.
The management brought in the Dept. of Fine Arts to design and build the statue of Brahma according to the traditions of the department. The gilded plaster statue was enshrined at the Erawan Hotel on November 9, 1956.
Both Thai and foreign visitors come to play their respects at the Shrine, which is widely known as the Erawan shrine. The number of worshippers is increasing every year. They come to pray to Brahma to grant their wishes, or simply to enjoy the exotic sights, sounds and atmosphere. It has been claimed that the shrine is very potent and usually wishes will come true...but in doing so, you must come back every year to pay your homage.
The original Erawan Shrine was destroyed by a demented man in March 2006. A replacement was quickly built and the Shrine re-opened to great fanfare in May 2006.
Even in the middle of a commercial district you will come across little bit of Thai-ness. A great example is the colourful Erawan Shrine, next to the Grand Hyatt hotel, and diagonally opposite the World Trade Center shopping mall. In addition to those making offerings, there is also a team of Thai dancers who will dance for a fee.
Interestingly, the statue in the shrine is a Brahma statue, not Buddha.
Definitely worth a detour.
UPDATE: The Shrine is currently closed due to vandalism (as of 21 March 2006) - but is due to re-open on 21 May following restoration work.
include the erawan shrine in your city tour...this is the four-faced buddha known to bring good luck to thai people...when we visited the place, a lot of thai people are offering candles and food...during our visit, a cultural dance is taking place...they can offer the dance to you, you will just give a minimum donation!
We were going to the Hyatt Erawan Tea Rooms for afternoon High Tea and as we approached the hotel we saw a beautiful shrine adjoining the hotel. It was a special holy day and there were many people lighting incense sticks and in worship. There was a group of beautifully dressed dancers celebrating the day, the shrine had a slight smoke haze. It was worth spending some time to observe and enjoy this most important part of Thai culture.
This roadside shrine at the busiest junction of BKK has been upgraded since my last visit 15 yrs ago.The place has been paved and fenced with addition of a dancer pavilion and musicians.Also statues of Elephants big n small of various shades are been worshipped.These improvements are probably funded by well wishers over the years.The old story goes that a women prayed at this shrine that she will fulfill her obligation if her wish is granted.Thus ,she was satisfied and return to dance in her full birthday suit in fornt of the detities.I heard that a lot of famous HongKong and Taiwanese actors n actress freguent this Shrine.
The Erawan Shrine is famous for granting your prayers and wishes. Devotees (locals and Chinese from nearby countries) visit this shrine to pray to the Four-Faced Buddha. If your prayers have been answered, you can pay some money and get dancers to perform a traditional dance for the buddha as a show of your appreciation. This shrine can get extremely crowded during the day.
I've heard that the direction in which you pray matters. If you are making a decent living, then you'll pray to in a clockwise direction...if you are..ahem....making a living out of some dishonest means (or involved in some sleazy business), eg. money-laundering, etc, then you'll pray in an anti-clockwise direction....I'm not sure if this rumour is true, though..
Dwarfed by the modern buildings, next to a busy road and in the shadow of the Skytrain the Erawan Shrine is one of those wonderful contrasts that you find in Bangkok. Step inside the small complex and it is easy to set aside the modern concrete city around you and concentrate on the traditional customs of worship.
The shrine was built as a spirit house ? home to the guardian of the place/building ? for the Erawan Hotel. Now it is a busy focus for worshippers who come to making offerings of flowers and incense or who commission short performances by the traditional dancers and musicians to give thanks for their good fortune. Outside the shrine caged birds are sold ? releasing them is supposed to bring good luck ? and tickets bought from the lottery sellers are also considered lucky.
Incense drifts lazily across the shrine like mist, its heady smell combining with the sound of instruments to create an almost dreamlike atmosphere, heightening emotions. Walk away from the shrine and back into the bustling city and it?s easy to imagine that the shrine is a mirage. This was one of the first places we visited in Bangkok and it was an evocative introduction to the city.
I will always drop by this temple to do some offering when I reach Bangkok. It start will a anti clockwise and I purchase some of the offering item from the temple. They also have dancers in the temple.
This shrine was constructed to warn off bad luck after construction incidents at the Erawan hotel nearby. This is a very popular shrine-which is covered in garlands of flowers. There is a wonderful strong aroma of incense that surrounds the shrine. Many Thai use gold leaf and make an offering-by placing the gold on the wooden elephants. After an act of good luck they will come here to say thanks. They or you can even hire a group of dancers to thank the spirits. They are always there-if you are interested in taking photos.
Both Thais and foreign visitors come to pay their respects at Erawan Shrine.
People offer colorful flower garlands, lotus, incense and candles.
If your wish has been granted, you will come back with donations of teak elephants or pay the classical Thai dancers and live orchestra to perform to the gods.
Erawan Shrine is located opposite the World Trade Centre, and walking distance if you are coming from Pratunam, MBK or Siam square.
Pay 20 Thai Baht to the person who's selling the incense sticks and candles and flowers.
Start in a clockwise direction from the entrance of the shrine, offering the flowers, candles and incense sticks to the 4-faced Budhha at the 4 corners.
Sometimes, you would catch Thai dancers there. I managed to catch a quick snapshot of them.