"Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional." -Buddha
This serene Buddha seated upon a fiery, 7-headed dragon is one of the lesser known shrines within the large temple complex known as the Wat Pho. A very unnoticed part of the temple houses this golden Buddha, which is clearly eclipsed by the grandeur of the great Reclining Buddha of the Wat Pho.
What's really interesting is the symbolism and story behind this particular depiction of Buddha. It is believed that Buddha's quest for enlightenment was marked by several months of rigorous austerities.
During his time meditating under the Bodhi tree, Buddha was subjected to the the harsh brutality of nature - rains, storms, lightning and thunder - with no protection. So the king of the Nagas (depicted here as the dragon) himself took the form of a giant hooded beast to protect Lord Buddha from the onslaught of the elements.
Man, mythology is dope. You know your ancestors must've been tripping on some reeeal good shit when they been fangirling over their intense Gods and all.