Litchfield County real estate information, local events and more.


A little bit of Buddha in Morris CT

Wat Lao Buddha Ariyamett Aram Temple Morris CTIn our travels yesterday Liddy and I decided to stop at a place I have always been curious about but never did stop. At 140 East St, in Morris, CT is the Wat Lao Buddha Ariyamett Aram Temple. We pulled in the driveway, and a man on a lawn tractor waived us inside with a big smile on his face. Another group of men were erecting a tent, and we saw a few monks walking about the place.

The Temple is such a stark difference to our usual New England vista. A welcome change, as soon as you enter through the gates you feel as if you have just been transported to another country.

Only one man spoke English, and he apologized that his language skills were not more accomplished. He said he had so much more he wanted to tell us about everything. We really had no trouble understanding him, however it was very apparent he wanted to tell us far more than he was able to. And truth be told, I had a million questions I would love to have asked him. He was kind and gracious to us, and invited us back on September 2, 2012 for a festival. There will be food to buy, music, many things going on. I cannot find anything online about the festival, but we hope to be able to attend!

We were taken into one of the temples on the property. It is all a work in progress, they are still adding detail to the back of the building. They have not only built the temple buildings themselves, (there appears to be a main temple, which we did not go into, and a few other smaller temples) they also make the statues and the details on the buildings right there. He showed us how they make them, no factory, they sit under a tent outdoors, a labor of love indeed. I did understand that the building we were shown is used for meditation, and we were told that we could only go so far inside as women are only allowed half way in the  building.

What a beautiful, peaceful place! I cannot find much information about this particular Temple online, and the language barrier does exist. None of the other men there spoke English, but their smiles and nods told us it was ok were there, even with my camera. Liddy remembered a client of hers who said he often drives there to meditate, perhaps he can fill us in later. I have found that they follow Theravada Buddhism which translates to "the Teaching of the Elders".

The Temple opened in 2002, and our escort told us that people drive from all over to come, from all over Connecticut, from as far as New Jersey. I believe, from what he told us, most of the members are from Laos.

If you are out and about driving near Morris, CT, do stop at the
Wat Lao Buddha Ariyamett Aram Temple at 140 East Street, Morris, CT. You should find a friendly group, despite the language barrier. And you will find some very interesting architecture and some of the most colorful buildings and statues I have ever seen!

Andrea Swiedler, Realtor, Southern Litchfield County Real Estate

2017 President, Greater New Milford Board of Realtors

2017 Connecticut Magazine 5 Star Realtor


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Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

Litchfield County Regional Office,375 Danbury Rd, New Milford, CT 06776


© Andrea Swiedler 2009 - 2017

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Comment balloon 27 commentsAndrea Swiedler • August 19 2012 05:21AM


Thank you for the information. I hope to visit this temple some day. It is just a few hours away.

Posted by Gita Bantwal, REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel (RE/MAX Centre Realtors) over 8 years ago

Your photos really capture the amazing detail and color of their work. It's really beautiful. 

Posted by James Quarello, Connecticut Home Inspector (JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC) over 8 years ago

Very beautiful Andrea. You did a fantastic job and will certainly bring more attention to it!

Posted by Jackie Connelly-Fornuff, "Moving at The Speed of YOU!" (Douglas Elliman Real Estate in Babylon NY) over 8 years ago

Andrea, this reminded me of when we lived in Japan a few years ago. Very nice photos.

Posted by Michael Setunsky, Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA over 8 years ago

Gita, I hope you call me when you come! It is amazing, so peaceful there. Perhaps if you come you can help me to understand it a bit better?

Jim, it really is. And they have done it all themselves.

Jackie, isn't it beautiful? Thank you!

Posted by Andrea Swiedler, Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 8 years ago


Oh wow, this is so awesome. I'll have to make a side trip there the next time I am up your way!

Posted by Richard Weisser, Richard Weisser Retired Real Estate Professional (Richard Weisser Realty) over 8 years ago

Michael, thank you! Isn't it great?

Richard, we can go together. Liddy and I split up from Rich yesterday between appointments to get photos. When we got to the next appointment I told him, "I don't care how many photos you got, we BEAT YOU!" He had to agree, LOL.

Posted by Andrea Swiedler, Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 8 years ago

There is a lot of hidden places in that area.  I grew up in Litchfield.  Fair season is just around the corner.

Posted by Keith Lawrence, ABR, SFR (Christie's International) over 8 years ago

Isn't it nice to to have a new adventure and discovery in your own neighborhood?

Posted by Norma Toering Broker for Palos Verdes and Beach Cities, Palos Verdes Luxury Homes in L.A. (Charlemagne International Properties) over 8 years ago

Andrea~ I would love to visit that temple, it looks like a treasure for sure! Thanks for sharing.

Posted by Jon Kolsky, Licensed California Real Estate Broker (Kolsky Realty & Management) over 8 years ago

Andrea that sounds like a very calming experience. It'll be interesting to learn more about this temple, the people and their teachings.  More please!

Posted by Anna Banana Kruchten CRS CRB, Phoenix Broker, 602-380-4886 (HomeSmart Real Estate BR030809000) over 8 years ago

These practices are rich in experience, truth and wisdom... Bodhidharma says..All know the way, but few actually walk it

Posted by Richie Alan Naggar, agent & author (people first...then business Ran Right Realty ) over 8 years ago

There's nothing like being temporarily transported to an exotic location right in your backyard. 

Posted by Charlie Dresen, Steamboat Springs, CO e-Pro (Steamboat Sotheby's International Realty) over 8 years ago

Andrea, Earlier this year my wife and I were fortunate enough to experience the Songkran Festival at the Wat Buddha Temple near Turner, Oregon.  The festival is kind of a Thai New Year celebration.  We were hosting a Thai student and took her and three of her friends there.  It was a unique experience.  There were hundreds of Thai, Vietnamese, and Lao people there and the tables held over 100 traditional dishes and desserts.  Everyone was very kind and my wife even participated in the food offerings to the monks.  I'm planning on writing a blog post about it, once I get my pictures uploaded and labeled.

Posted by Retired from ActiveRain over 8 years ago

Andrea  What a fantastic adventure .I hope you are planning to go to to festival on Sept 2 sounds like so much fun

Posted by Hannah Williams, Expertise NE Philadelphia & Bucks 215-820-3376 (HomeStarr Realty) over 8 years ago

I'm a little surprised that so few of the folks there spoke English.  I would have expected, with the rise in popularity of Buddhism in this country, that there would have been some locals there too!

Posted by Jeff Ragan, Luxury Agent, Northern California (Ming Tree, Realtors Real Living) over 8 years ago

I know this wasn't the point of your post, but you were OK with the women NOT being allowed in part of the building part? Why are we so politically correct in this country that we allow that to happen? Can I set up a men only college, or golf course or men only open house or Real Estate office? No. But when its a religious thing from another country, that none of what to ruffle the feathers of, then I guess discrimination is perfectly fine. Oh wait that's right, if it's Buddhism, then discrimination in the name of religion is perfectly fine. We are one messed up country of hypocrites. 

Posted by Andrew Martin (REMAX Accord) over 8 years ago

Cool pictures....I would imagine, as you said, that the structure as well as everything else, is in very stark contrast to the looks of New England....I bet that it sure stands out!!!!

Posted by Larry Bettag, Vice-President of National Production (Cherry Creek Mortgage Illinois Residential Mortgage License LMB #0005759 Cherry Creek Mortgage NMLS #: 3001) over 8 years ago

Who would have thought a Buddist Temple up in CT.  But, actually it does make sense.  The surrounds are beautiful and peaceful.  Very nice.

Posted by Chris and Dick Dovorany, Broker/Associate at Premiere Plus Realty ( Homes for Sale in Naples, Bonita Springs and Estero, Florida) over 8 years ago

Very nice localism and photos are great.  And this just goes to show that we do have "freedom" here, to worship as we see fit.  YEAH for this freedom!

Posted by Carla Muss-Jacobs, RETIRED (RETIRED / State License is Inactive) over 8 years ago

I wanna go to the festival.  I'm totally jealous now.

Posted by Tammy Lankford,, Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville (Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668) over 8 years ago

Andrea, I have never been in a Buddha Temple, but I would love to see one first hand.  I am sure there has to be one by me.

Posted by George Souto, Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert (George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages) over 8 years ago

Thank you for the reminder.  We have a Buddhist temple here in the Raleigh Triangle area and I have been meaning to see what classes and events they sponsor.  I am reading a book titled _ The Cow in the Parking Lot _ about letting go of anger.  Anger does harm to the angry person and is usually counter-productive as far as resolving the situation that caused the anger.  It's based on Buddhist principles; I'd like to know more.

Posted by Dianne Goode, Realtor/Broker (Raleigh Cary Realty) over 8 years ago

Keith, they have already started, and I love it!

Norma, it really is! And to be so warmly welcomed was a big plus.

Jon, my guess is you have more of these in CA than you can shake a stick at? Thank you!

Anna Banana, he clearly wanted to tell us more about it, and was frustrated that his command of the English language didn't allow it. I want more too!!!!

Richie, I love that saying. When doing research I was able to read up on a few things, much of which just rings true.

Charlie, you are right about that, such a great treat!

Rick, how cool is that! We are planning to go for the festival, and I hope that I can because it should be quite a treat.

Hannah, I hope I can. It was such a treat for both Liddy and I, we had a fantastic time!

Jeff, there were a handful of people there only. And honestly, he felt he did a bad job communicating, but he didn't!

Andrew, ouch! No, that wasn't the point. If you knew me, you would know that I don't understand the difference placed on men and women. But I get it in religion. I never, ever want to be an impediment to anyone trying to worship. And it doesn't bother me. I have run across this before when I was involved in a non profit organization. I had to go to a Russian Orthodox church service. I knew enough to wear something on my head, but I wore pants.... what a disaster that was for the women in the church! The priest showed me around and I was not allowed in certain parts of the church. I was younger then, thought it was a stupid thing. Now I am a wiser woman these days. So, no, it doesn't bother me. Also, you should know that my husband is from Russia. He was mortified when he saw the look on my face as the priest stopped me from going where I wasn't allowed.

I celebrate the diverse cultures we have in this country, my personal belief is we are enriched by it!

(I think we have a separation of church and state in this country too)

Larry, it really is. So different, and so wonderful!

Chris & Dick, whoda thunk... but it is here!

Carla, LOL, great comment. Thank you!

Tammy, well, fly on up! I hope to make it and give you the scoop.

George, if not, when you come here on one of your day trips with your wife, go to Morris and check it out! Then you can go to March Farm and see if they have that Hunter Cheddar cheese.....

Posted by Andrea Swiedler, Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 8 years ago

Dianne, how interesting! I am sure you will find a temple near you. I just hope they can communicate with you. Anger is my worst enemy, whatever it takes to get rid of it is a great thing. I will have to look into the book.

Posted by Andrea Swiedler, Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 8 years ago

Dear Diane Goode,

Thanks for spreading the word about "The Cow in the Parking Lot, a Zen Approach to Overcoming Anger"!

And thank you Andrea for your interest. This little book has helped change many people's lives.

All the best to you,

Susan Edmiston, co-author "The Cow in the Parking Lot"

P.S. I now live in the SF Bay area but used to live in NYC and visited Litchfield. It is a very beautiful place. 


Posted by Susan Edmiston over 8 years ago

Susan, thank you for the comment, I am going to check your book out. I am very curious about it.

Litchfield is a beautiful place, I love living here, love all the great eye candy around!

Posted by Andrea Swiedler, Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 8 years ago