ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN: CURVE OF THE BOTTOM BASE SHIP-SHAPED UBOSOT IN NAKHON RATCHASIMA
This research aims to explore the design concept and examine the fundamentals of architectural curve design of the bottom base ship-shaped Ubosot (ordination hall) in Nakhon Ratchasima province, Thailand. According to the survey, two ship-shaped ordination halls are discovered. The first one is Phra Ubosot Wat Bueng (royal temple) located in Mueang District, constructed upon the foundation of Nakhon Ratchasima city in the reign of King Narai the Great. The second one is Ubosot Wat Na Phrathat, situated in Pak Thong Chai District founded in early Rattanakosin era. The design concept of the ship-shaped Ubosot beautifully represents the relation patterns between abstract and concrete concepts, which identified the Buddhist doctrine from the story of Vessantara Jataka. He was a prince who made the greatest virtue by giving up his beloved children in charity, with the aim of taking all creatures to cross the ocean of suffering of cyclic existence toward nirvana, and the vehicle that carries those creatures by ship. The abstract symbol of the ship-shaped Ubosot represents the Buddhist ship that takes all creatures across the treacherous sea of evils toward nirvana, the ultimate spiritual goal of Buddhism. The ship-shaped Ubosot of Wat Bueng symbolized the architecture of King Narai in late Ayutthaya Kingdom, which was the origin of Nakhon Ratchasima province. Another temple at Wat Na Phrathat represented early Rattanakosin Kingdom art styles in the reign of King Rama III.
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