Sri Lanka Philatelic Bureau of the Department of Posts will issue two new postage stamps in the denominations of Rs. 10.00, and Rs. 50.00 and a souvenir sheet on 02ndNovember 2015 to marks the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Sri Lanka and Thailand.
Thailand post will also issue two postage stamps parallel to this issue using the same designs in the same day and this will be the first ever joint stamp issue of Sri Lanka has done with a foreign postal administration.
|Date of Issue||2nd Nov 2015|
|Catalogue No:||Rs.10.00 – CSL 2127 Rs.50.00 – CSL 2128||Stamp Designer||Rs.10/- - Mr. D.G Sudath Jayawardena (Sri Lanka)
Rs.50/- - Mr. UdonNiyomthum (Thailand)
|Sheet Composition:||20 stamps per sheet|
Sri Lanka and Thailand have a long history of close religious, cultural and trade links fostered over several centuries. Buddhism has played a considerably important role in binding the two countries together from the ancient time, and relations have been further consolidated since the establishment of diplomatic relations. The two countries enjoy a history of mutually beneficial exchanges in various fields such as architecture and culture founded on Buddhism.
Theravada Buddhism in Thailand is called "Lanka Wong" sect and its presence could be traced back to 17 BE which was introduced by Sri Lankan monks who stayed and preached a sermon in Nakhon Sri Thammarat prior to its popularity found in the Kingdom of Sukhothai while Theravada Buddhism in Sri Lanka is called "Siam" sect. Ever since the first group of Dhammaduta from Ayutthaya led by PhraUpali travelling to Sri Lanka in 1752 to restore its Buddhism foundered by the threats during the time.
The formal diplomatic relations between the two countries were established on 20thNovember 1955and its 60th anniversary will befall this year so their postal administrations released a joint commemorative stamp set featuring of important places of worship which are the largest stupas in each country; The Jethavana Stupa of Sri Lanka and Phrapathomchedi of Thailand known as the world's biggest stupa. Both stamps will be available on November 02ndto be consistent with the celebration of the 100th anniversary of PhraRuangRojanarit Buddha image, a sacred cast statue located in front of Phrapathomchedi Pagoda during the visit of H.E. Maithripala Sirisena the president of Sri Lanka to Thailand.
The Jetavana stupa which was recorded at that time as the third largest monument in the world was 400 feet high. The tallest sacred brick construction in the world today is the Jetavana stupa. Since this monastery complex was built in the Jotiya forest situated within the boundary of MahaVihara it is said to have been known as the Jetavanaramaya. As it was constructed during the reign of king Mahasen ( 276 AD – 303 AD), he is regarded as its founder. It was king Siri Meghawanna( 303 AD- 331 AD), son of king Mahasen, who competed its construction. Subsequently, king Mittasena (432 AD- 433 AD) constructed the elephant wall and a gateway with an entrance and king Dhatusena who reigned during the period 459 AD – 477 AD reconstructed the catra of the stupa. King Mahanaga (573 AD – 575 AD) plastered the stupa with lime and repaired the elephant wall. King Aggabodhi I (575 AD- 608 AD) who ascended the throne thereafter caused gemstones to be studded upon the stupa and added a golden catra to it.
King Parakramabahu I (1153 AD-1186 AD) who was a great king during the Polonnaru period reconstructed the stupa lowering its height to the present level which is 232 feet. Its diameter is 367 feet. The length of a side of the stone paved yard on which it is situated is 576 feet. Among the artifacts discovered in the Jetavana excavation are nine golden plates with the PragnaParamita Sutra which is a Mahayana sutta written upon themT.M.C. Bandara, Exploration Office, Department of Archaeology
The first-class royal monastery, the temple houses Phrapathomchedi, the largest pagoda in Thailand and the official provincial symbol of Nakhon Pathom
The present Phrapathomchediwas built during the reign of King Rama IV in 1853, under his royal command, the new Chedi was constructed to cover the former Chedi of which the shape was of an upside down bell with a Prang top. It is assumed that the former Chedi was dated back to 539 AD as the upside-down-bell-shaped Chedi has a similar style to the SanchiChedi in India, built in the reign of King Asoka. The construction of the new huge Chedi was completed in the reign of King Rama V in 1870 AD. In total, it took 17 years to build.
The completed Chedi became a circular one that covers an upside-down, Lankan style, bell-shaped Chedi. The height from bottom to a top crown is about 120.45 metres, and 233.50 metres diameter at the base.
During the reign of King Rama VI, Wat PhraPathomChedi was renovated and later became the royal temple of the King. Within the monastery compound, the sacred Chedi houses Lord Buddha's relics. There are various interesting historical items, including the PhraRuangRodjanarit, an image of Buddha bestowing pardon, is enshrined in a vihara located in the North and in front of Phrapathomchedi.