Today marks the end of Buddhist Lent, and people of the Buddhist faith were giving alms and visiting temples in observance of Ok Phansa Day. However, activities were subdued compared to past years because of the COVID-19 situation and floods that were affecting many areas.
In Uthai Thani province, Buddhists and tourists gave alms at a pier on the Sakae Krang River, opposite Uposottharam Temple. The temple is an important tourism attraction for the province, and monks from the temple have a tradition of setting off on boats to receive alms. People can visit the pier to give alms at 7 am every morning, after which they may choose to stroll inside the nearby riverside market where pesticide residue-free vegetables and fish caught from the Sakae Krang River are on offer.
In Chonburi, Buddhists gathered at Si Maha Racha and Rat Niyomtham temples to observe the end of Lent while also adhering to social distancing and mask-wearing measures. The crowd was quite large as many people’s confidence had improved after receiving two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.
In Songkhla, those of the Buddhist faith gave alms amidst falling rain today (21 Oct). Alms givers and the monks were seen wearing masks and observing social distancing. Songkhla City’s municipal authority had canceled a few Rains Retreat activities this year because of concerns over the number of daily Covid infections in Songkhla, which has yet to subside.
In Yala, many Buddhists were seen shopping for food and flowers to give alms to monks at the Soi 11 Market in the province’s city area. (NNT)