Gaining Insight from Horror: The Killing Fields of Cambodia

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Face it your going to die,

Acknowledging that all things come to an end is a Buddhist philosophy referred to as impermanence. Tibetan Monks meditate on impermanence as a tool to better utilize their time. As a result Monks feels as if their time is  more valuable. You don’t have to be a Monk to realize the importance of this, and there are other ways to invoke this feeling. One way is by observing death first hand. While most of us will experience this unexpectedly, it is also an important to voluntarily come face to face with death. Young Samurais where shown fallen soldiers to invoke a sense of mortality. This should not be thought of in a morbid sense, but as a motivational tool to live a more fulfilling life.

IMG_1495I personally have never felt a greater sense of impermanence, then day I visited Choeung Ek and SR 21. Revisiting these horrors gave me a sense of how valuable my life is, and also how fortunate I am to have my loved ones safe.  The trip provided me with a greater sense of purpose in my life, and made all my problems feel insignificant. Seeing the suffering of others, only made me want to find ways to elevate suffering of those in need.  It was a great experience, and I hope you can take something away from it.

I have provided brief information on both sites as well as a photo gallery below .

The Killing Fields (Choeung EK)

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Buddisht Monument filled with thousands of human skulls

This historic landmark is the site of mass graves known as the killing fields. At the center of the site resides a 200 foot monument filled with the skulls of the Khmer Rogue victims. During the rainy season the trails around the site are littered with victims clothes that are washed up by the rain. A photo gallery is posted below. The photos are graphic, so view with discretion.

 

SR 21

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SR 21 prison camp

SR 21 is a former high school that was utilized as a concentration camp during the Cambodian Genocide, today it is a museum. Much has been preserved at SR 21, victims photographs before and after execution are on display. The holding cells and torture rooms still looks as if the are crime scenes with decades old blood staining the walls. A photo gallery is posted below. The photos are graphic, so view with discretion.

Learn more about the Cambodian Genocide.

Cambodia is still in a state of redevelopment, many children lack education and even clean drinking water. I had the privilege of visiting local schools funded by Cambodian Childs Dream Organization, and speaking with their president. If you would like to donate to a good cause visit their website. They also except volunteers, and they do not charge for you to volunteer, unlike some other sketchy Cambodian charities.

 

Simply click the first photo to begin slide show: 

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