Attention all other religions, your hell is a tame paradise compared to the dark, bloody underworld of Buddhism.
In Thailand, gruesome sculptural depictions of the 136 fiery pits of Buddhist hell, known as Naraka, are scattered throughout the country in parks and gardens that serve as popular weekend attractions at which families can teach their kids morality lessons. Filled with stomach-turning, gruesome sculptures, each garden warns of what happens to those who defy the otherwise peace-loving religion’s tenets.
About an hour and a half from Bangkok, the Wang Saen Suk Hell Garden is the largest of the themed areas. Orange robe-clad monks from the adjoining Buddhist temple oversee the morbid sculpture park. But the real boss is the “Death King” Phya Yom, who weighs the record of each recently deceased human’s good deeds (which are engraved in his gold ledger) against their sins (which are scratched onto a piece of dog leather). If the bad overshadows the good, they are inflicted with the proper punishment for their crimes before being reincarnated and returned to earth.