The lush green jungle surrounding Bayon Temple secretly camouflaged its location in relation to other relevant structures at Angkor, so it was misled about the true compound it belongs to. Therefore, that Bayon Temple stands in the very centre of the ancient capital of Angkor Thom was not universally acknowledged for such a long time. Dating back from the late 12th century, Bayon Temple brims with a distinguishing feature of about 200 stone massive faces looking in all directions.
Worked by King Jayavarman VII as a feature of a gigantic development of his capital Angkor Thom, Bayon Temple was at first planned with three levels. In nature, the first and second levels bear the element of square outer and internal galleries, and a circular central sanctuary set apart by a 43-meter-high pinnacle marked the third level. In this way, the course of action of the sanctuary is unmistakably quite complex to be, with a labyrinth of galleries, passages and flights of stairs connected in some way that makes it difficult to distinguish each level and creates shallow light, narrow walkways and low ceiling.
Bayon Temple representing the convergence of heaven and earth, it remains one of the most mysterious temples of the Angkor complex. The temple is directed towards the east. Bayon Temple is surrounded with two walls. These walls portray large galleries exhibiting an marvelous collection of scenes of historical and mythological events and images from daily life activities of the Angkorian Khmer for almost one thousand years
There are nearly 11,000 sculptural figures covering the walls of 1.2 kilometres in length.
Mystery behind The Carved Faces At Bayon Temple
Bayon Temple incredible 200 stone gigantic faces cut out of 54 pinnacles or towers, every one of which is highlighted by two, three or four giantic faces.
The Bayon Temple complex was built under the direction of the Mahayana Buddhist ruler Jayavarman VII, who ascended to the Khmer kingdom’s throne at Angkor in 1181 A.D. He erected the situation for Buddhist worship, although it later was renovated and used as a Hindu temple. Various kinds of Hindu and Buddhist worship were practiced side-by-side and successively within the traditional royal courts of Southeast Asia .
Classical Khmer kings promoted the thought (known as “devaraja”) that there was an intersection of the ruling king and a validating god. Usually the Hindu god chosen for this personal identification was Siva, but sometimes it had been Vishnu, or, for some, a godly image of Buddhist origins. Khmer temples thus often portray the ruling king incarnated because the god, whose shrines are within a monument on earth that models the design of the cosmos and heavens.
The faces depicted on the Bayon towers clearly resemble faces on known portrait statues of Jayavarman VII. Given his Buddhist leanings, it’s thought that the massive faces portray him in semi-divine form as a “boddhisattva,” an enlightened being conceived in Mahayana who postpones entering Nirvana so on stay earth helping others towards salvation. Boddhisattvas are somewhat like Mahayana Buddhist saints.
While some scholar say the faces represent lord Brahma( The God of Eternity)
Four faces, looking toward the cardinal directions, are carved on the sides of fifty-four standing towers at Bayon Temple. The preservation of the various of the towers, however, is poor so it’s difficult to know exactly how all the towers were carved. Over 200 giant smiling faces remain, but there may once are between one and a couple of hundred towers, each with four faces. These structures are mentioned as “face towers.”
The bas-relief carvings on the outer walls of the Bayon towers depict heroic historical tales also as scenes of everyday Khmer life. Jayavarman VII was a capable military commander who repelled attacks by the Champa kingdom before becoming the Khmer king and undertaking an enormous effort to construct stone temples and other monuments.
Ultimately, it had been the Siamese kingdom based in what’s now Thailand, that sacked Angkor in 1431 and ended the kingdom’s regional power.