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Theravada Buddhism in Thailand

Some state Thailand is the land of Buddhism. Not just because of the abundance of temples but since more than 93.6 percent of the Thai population follows the Buddha teachings. The majority of Thai individuals are born into a Theravada Buddhist household.

The 3 Jewels Buddhists respect and concern

the follow as the 3 Gems of Buddhism; 1. Buddha (พระพุทธ(เจ้า ): Prá ~ Póod-(tá-jâo)) 2. Dharma or Buddha’s mentors(พระธรรม: Prá ~ Tam )3. Songha or Monks(พระสงฆ์: Prá ~ Sŏ’ ng )The Ways Thais Practise Buddhism in Recent days

At

the age

of 20, Thai males can ordain(บวช: Bùad )to be a monk(พระ (สงฆ์): Prá ~ (Sŏ’ng) )to practise Buddhism. There are different purposes and beliefs in going into monkshood either for practising to achieve a sublime state of nirvana( following the Buddha course by practicing Noble Eightfold Path which is likewise known as the Middle Way), for education, as a custom-made belief to merit their moms and dads or their loved ones who passed away and some individuals even believe it can help reducing sin. The present king, Rama 9 likewise got in monkshood like his ancestors did and lots of regular guys would do, when he was twenty years old. For 15 days, he was learning, practicing and following the mentor of Buddha. Females can become a nun(แม่ชี: Mâe ~ Chee)to practise and assist spreading Buddhism

.

Keep in mind: When getting in monkshood or ending up being a nun, men and women are not allowed to have intimate or individual contact with each other as they need to practise and control their mind away from any types of desires. Laymen( ฆารวาส: Kaa-rá-wâad )can practice Buddhism by following Buddha’s teaching of the 5 precepts

which are preventing sinful actions by NOT; 1. Eliminating animals 2. Stealing 3. Lying 4. Consuming alcohol 5. Wrong doing in sexual acts Laymen can support Buddhism by making benefit(ทำบุญ: Tam Boon =to make/do+benefit)which can be performed in primarily two ways; a)Using food to monks(ตักบาตร:

Tàk Bàad=to scoop +monk’s food bowl)b) Contributing (บริจาค: Bor-rí-jàak) some cash or things to a temple to aid with anything that is needed for supporting and spreading out Buddhism. The Buddhist Calendar (Wikipedia)

The Buddhist calendar plays an essential function in Thai society. On Buddhist holy days (วันพระ: Wun Phrá =day +monk), Buddhist Thais usually go to a temple for using food to

monks,

donating money to the temple,

hoping, listening to

Dharma preaching(sermons), meditate, talking about Dharma or join other Buddhist activities. Going to the temple is also the way of holding the relationship of individuals in the community. Some Buddhists would also hold the 8 precepts which are the 5 precepts(avoiding any wicked actions)as stated above with 3 more precepts( managing their desires )which are; 6. Not consuming at night time(after midday until dawn )7. Not wearing devices and perfume as well as Not doing any actions for satisfaction e.g. singing,

listening to music, etc. 8. Not sleeping off-ground and on comfy bed/mattress. Some crucial Buddhist holy days are stipulated as legal holidays. Federal Government Workplace, Banks and Services are off and the sale of alcohol is restricted throughout these Buddhist legal holidays. Buddhist holidays are also considered unique times to visit a temple to follow a ritual event, make

merit and listen to a sermon (Dharma talk).

Theravada Buddhist National Holidays in Thailand มาฆบูชา: Makha Bucha Day Celebrated on the 15th day of the waxing moon (full moon)of the 3rd lunar month. Makha Bucha Day is the day where Lord Buddha taught for the very first time after 9 months of his knowledge. It is believed that there were 1,250 arhats who came to visit and show respect to Buddha

without

any schedule. At this teaching, Buddha concluded his teachings(The heart

of

his teaching)as”Do good ideas, avoiding doing

bad things( sins)and cleanse your mind”วันวิสาขบูชา: Visakha Bucha Day Commemorated on the 15th day of the waxing moon (moon)of the 6th lunar month. Visakha Bucha Day is a Memorial Day in Buddhism because there are three crucial events in the life of Lord Buddha which are the birth, the enlightenment and the death of Lord Buddha. It is likewise a”World Heritage Day “which is acknowledged by the UNESCO on December

13

,

1999. วันอาสาฬหบูชา: Asalha Bucha Day Celebrated on the 15th day of the waxing moon (full moon) of the eighth lunar month. Asalha Bucha Day is the birth of the 3rd gem, Songha (monks ). It is likewise referred to as Dharma Day which commemorates the”Turning of the wheel of the Dharma”วันเข้าพรรษา: Khaw Phansa Day Celebrated at the start of the 3 month yearly retreat of monks during the rainy season(Likewise known as Buddhist Lent

)which follows Asalha Bucha Day on the very first day of the waning moon of the

eighth lunar month. During this duration, monks would stay in one location, generally in abbeys or temples. In the ancient times, as the rainy season is farming season, this retreat is for monks to stop taking a trip to spread Buddhism in order to avoid

from stepping/destroying the brand-new grows. Nowadays, as monks do not often need to take a trip to


spread out Buddhism any longer monks typically devote this duration to meditation rather. When it comes to Laymen, they celebrate Khaw Phansa Day with Candle Light Ceremony by walking around the Ubosot hall at night. In some areas in Thailand there is a Candle Light Festival where people would gather and parade with embellished candle lights. We can say that Thailand is the land of Theravada Buddhism however prior to and after the rise of Theravada Buddhism there are other beliefs such as ghost belief, Indian Brahmanic religion and Mahayana Buddhism. The ghosts of local folklore, vegetarian festival, Brahmanism shrines and tattooing become part of blended beliefs that Thais have adopted.

There is

other saying”Thailand is the land of the totally free”which can be interpreted in many methods. One common interpretation is” Free to believe”. Written by Kruu Noi/ Modified by Kruu Jiab Source

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