Ancient temples suffer Chiangmai quake damage

TNA, June 21, 2007

Chiang Mai, Thailand -- Cracks have been found in an historic 400-year-old temple in the northern province of Chiang Mai following several recent earthquakes, moderate in impact but adding to the cumulative damage suffered over time.

Cracks were found in the walls of the over 400-year-old assembly hall and the principle Buddha image in Wat Saohin here after a 4.5 magnitude earthquake rocked the province on Tuesday.

Murals that were painted more than a century ago, telling stories of the former incarnations of the Lord Buddha, were also damaged.

Abbot and rector Boonsong Kantathammo said that the cracks were present prior to the earthquake as the temple is four centuries old, but the cracks are widening following several tremors this year.

The temple has officially requested the Fine Arts Department to restore its structures because they are now vulnerable to further earthquakes which could more easily cause extensive damage to the temple, or even collapse the assembly hall.

Elsewhere in the province, the Royal Irrigation Department has inspected two dams and found no damage at all.

However, historic structures predating the founding of the Chiang Saen kingdom over seven hundred years ago are at risk, according to Director-General Theerawat Kunwanit of the Department of Public Works and Town and Country Planning after he inspected the ancient Wat Phrathat in Chiang Rai's Chiang Saen district, along the Mekong River.

Mr. Theerawat said the crown of the chedi collapsed due to the May 16 earthquake, with a magnitude of 6.1 on the Richter scale, which rocked mainland Southeast Asia's Golden Triangle region.

Restoration work on the chedi is half complete, he said, adding that the department had declared several provinces vulnerable to occasional moderate earthquakes, and that construction should consequently take earthquakes into account.

An earthquake measuring 5.1 on the Richter scale shook Chiang Mai's Mae Rim district on December 19 last year, followed by a 4.2-magnitude on the Myanmar border with Thailand's Mae Hong Son province on Monday.

We Need Your Help to Train the
Buddhist AI Chat Bot
(Neural Omniscient Robotic-Being for Buddhist Understanding)

For Malaysians who wants to donate in MYR, please use the following account:

Account Name: Bodhi Vision
Account No:. 2122 00000 44661
Bank: RHB
Note: Please indicate your name in the payment slip. Thank you.

Dear Friends in the Dharma,

We seek your generous support to help us train NORBU, the word's first Buddhist AI Chat Bot.

Here are some ways you can contribute to this noble cause:

One-time Donation or Loan: A single contribution, regardless of its size, will go a long way in helping us reach our goal and make the Buddhist LLM a beacon of wisdom for all.

How will your donation / loan be used? Download the NORBU White Paper for details.

For Malaysians who wants to donate in MYR, please use the following account:

Account Name: Bodhi Vision
Account No:. 2122 00000 44661
Bank: RHB
Note: Please indicate your purpose of payment (loan or donation) in the payment slip. Thank you.

Once payment is banked in, please send the payment slip via email to: Your donation/loan will be published and publicly acknowledged on the Buddhist Channel.

Spread the Word: Share this initiative with your friends, family and fellow Dharma enthusiasts. Join "Friends of Norbu" at: Together, we can build a stronger community and create a positive impact on a global scale.

Volunteer: If you possess expertise in AI, natural language processing, Dharma knowledge in terms of Buddhist sutras in various languages or related fields, and wish to lend your skills, please contact us. Your knowledge and passion could be invaluable to our project's success.

Your support is part of a collective effort to preserve and disseminate the profound teachings of Buddhism. By contributing to the NORBU, you become a "virtual Bodhisattva" to make Buddhist wisdom more accessible to seekers worldwide.

Thank you for helping to make NORBU a wise and compassionate Buddhist Chatbot!

May you be blessed with inner peace and wisdom,

With deepest gratitude,

Kooi F. Lim
On behalf of The Buddhist Channel Team

Note: To date, we have received the following contributions for NORBU:
US$ 75 from Gary Gach (Loan)
US$ 50 from Chong Sim Keong
MYR 300 from Wilson Tee
MYR 500 from Lim Yan Pok
MYR 50 from Oon Yeoh
MYR 200 from Ooi Poh Tin
MYR 300 from Lai Swee Pin
MYR 100 from Ong Hooi Sian
MYR 1,000 from Fam Sin Nin
MYR 500 from Oh teik Bin
MYR 300 from Yeoh Ai Guat
MYR 300 from Yong Lily
MYR 50 from Bandar Utama Buddhist Society
MYR 1,000 from Chiam Swee Ann
MYR 1,000 from Lye Veei Chiew
MYR 1,000 from Por Yong Tong
MYR 80 from Lee Wai Yee
MYR 500 from Pek Chee Hen
MYR 300 from Hor Tuck Loon
MYR 1,000 from Wise Payments Malaysia Sdn Bhd
MYR 200 from Teo Yen Hua
MYR 500 from Ng Wee Keat
MYR 10,000 from Chang Quai Hung, Jackie (Loan)
MYR 10,000 from K. C. Lim & Agnes (Loan)
MYR 10,000 from Juin & Jooky Tan (Loan)
MYR 100 from Poh Boon Fong (on behalf of SXI Buddhist Students Society)
MYR 10,000 from Fam Shan-Shan (Loan)
MYR 10,000 from John Fam (Loan)
MYR 500 from Phang Cheng Kar
MYR 100 from Lee Suat Yee
MYR 500 from Teo Chwee Hoon (on behalf of Lai Siow Kee)
MYR 200 from Mak Yuen Chau

We express our deep gratitude for the support and generosity.

If you have any enquiries, please write to: