Wat Khanikaphon

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Wat Khanikaphon
Wat Khanikaphon is located in Bangkok
Wat Khanikaphon
Shown within Bangkok
Basic information
Location 416, Thanon Phlapphla Chai, Khwaeng Pom Prap, Khet Pom Prap Sattru Phai, Bangkok[1]
Geographic coordinates 13°44′39″N 100°30′36″E / 13.74417°N 100.51000°E / 13.74417; 100.51000Coordinates: 13°44′39″N 100°30′36″E / 13.74417°N 100.51000°E / 13.74417; 100.51000
Affiliation Mahanikaya Buddhism
Country Thailand
Architectural description
Founder Madam Faeng, brothel manager[2]
Completed 1833[2]

Wat Khanikaphon (Thai: วัดคณิกาผล) is a Thai private temple in Maha Nikaya sect of Buddhism,[2] located on Thanon Phlapphla Chai, Khwaeng Pom Prap, Khet Pom Prap Sattru Phai, Bangkok, in front of the Phlapphla Chai Police Office.

During the reign of King Nang Klao, a rich old woman whose name was Faeng (แฟง), often called Madam Faeng by the public, was a faithful Buddhist, despite being a manager of a brothel, called "Madam Faeng's Station," situated on Thanon Yaowarat. The old woman raised funds amongst the prostitutes in her brothel to build the temple in 1833.[2][3]

In celebrating the temple, Madam Faeng invited Father To, a renown monk who later obtained an ecclesiastical title as Somdet Phra Phutthachan (To Phrommarangsi), to deliver a sermon, hoping that the monk would praise her contributions amongst the public. Father To addressed the public that the merits made by one for displaying his own virtue, even great in amount, would result in low goodness. The monk also said that the prostitution incomes which Madam Faeng spent in building the temple were considered the 'sinful money', it was regarded that Madam Faeng made the incomplete contributions, stating that "These charitable activities of the host are of various backgrounds. It is therefore considered that in making one pound of contribution, Madam Faeng would gain only one shilling of merit."[3][4]

Originally, there was no official name of the temple. The people merely called the temple "Madam Faeng's Temple" (วัดใหม่ยายแฟง, literally 'New Temple by Madam Faeng').[2] As from its establishment, the temple has been opened to the public and a site of public religious activities. When King Chulalongkorn ascended to the throne, Madam Faeng's descendants renovated the temple and petitioned the King for its official name. King Chulalongkorn named the temple "Khanikaphon," from Pāḷi, Gaṇikābala, meaning the temple which was the result of the prostitutes' contributions.[2]

Currently, the temple maintains many items existing since its establishment, including the presiding Buddha image, the central hall, the image halls, a small pagoda, the cloisters, the masonic bell tower, and the ancient file cabinet. There are also a model of Father To in front of the temple, and a half figure of Madam Faeng covered with gold leaves and placed inside the wall. On the base of the Madam Faeng figure, there is an inscription: "This Wat Khanikaphon was established in 1833 by Madam Faeng, ascendant of the Paorohit Family."[5]

The temple also runs a primary school called "Wat Khanikaphon School," subsidiary to the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration.


  1. ^ วัดคณิกาผล [Wat Khanikaphpn] (in Thai). Yellow Pages. n.d. Retrieved 17 August 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f วัดคณิกาผล [Wat Khanikaphon] (in Thai). Royal Institute of Thailand. 29 มีนาคม 2552. Retrieved 17 August 2012.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  3. ^ a b วัดคณิกาผล วัดที่เป็นผลได้มาจากหญิงโลมเมือง [Wat Khanikaphon, a temple which is the result of the prostitutes' contributions] (in Thai). Kom Chad Luek. ม.ป.ป. Retrieved 17 August 2012.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  4. ^ แนวคิดการเปลี่ยนชื่อวัด : กรณีศึกษา "วัดคณิกาผล" [Idea in renaming temples: Case study of 'Wat Khanikaphon'] (in Thai). Siam Culture. 16 November 2010. Retrieved 17 August 2012. 
  5. ^ วัดคณิกาผล [Wat Khanikaphon] (in Thai). Sanook! Travel. 1 มกราคม 2552. Retrieved 17 August 2012.  Check date values in: |date= (help)