Thailand is one of the countries where a number of Buddhist festivals are celebrated with great fervour and universal participation. If one is visiting Thailand during the time of one of these festival, it is a pity not to join and ensure that one enjoys them to the maximum extent. We have visited Thailand often, but in 1999 we chanced upon one fo these Buddhist festivals (excuse the poor quality of these photos, but I was using a rather primitive digital camera at the time!).
This is the Asalaha Bucha - Wan Khao Pansa Festival, which is celebrated in the eighth lunar month (July). The Festival marks the beginning of the Buddhist "rain retreat" and the Buddhist Lent, or "Phansa". It is the time when the Buddhist monks retreat to their temples and concentrate on their studies and meditation. The Buddhist lent continues for a period of three months and is also considered a great time for ordination of monks. The common people too participate in this festival with enthusiasm and offer food, clothes and other items of daily use to temples and monasteries. Items that are used in providing light, like lanterns, lamps or lamp oil are especially important. These signify the illumination of spirit as well as that of body.
The traditional Thai music and dancing is amazing!
This post is part of the Mellow Yellow Monday meme,
and also part of the Blue Monday meme.