Millions of Thai Buddhists joined together yesterday to mark Visakha Bucha Day going to temples across the country offering alms to monks in the morning as part of merit-making in this important Buddhist day.
Later in the evening, Thai Buddhists returned to the temples again to perform “Wien Tien” in the evenings, or circling the bodh, or main sermon or prayer hall, carrying candles, incense and lotus flowers.
This important day, a national public holiday, is the day that marks three important events, the birth of the Lord Buddha, the enlightment of the Lord Buddha, and the pass away of the Lord Buddha.
The day is also recognized by the UNESCO in 1999 as “World Heritage Day”, and Thailand where the permanent location of the World Fellowship of Buddhists is located was chosen to host celebrating event for the day.
Activities observed by devout Buddhists across the country on this day includes offering food to monks and novices in the morning, visiting temples tolisten to sermons, to make merit, to give donations and join in the other Buddhist activities.
Some also set birds and fishes on belief that this will get them out of bad lucks, and bring fortunes to them.
In Bangkok, Bangkok deputy governor Amorn Kitchawengkul presided over a mass merit making ceremony at Sanam Luang offering food to 10 senior monks and 234 monks.
In Chiang Mai, governor Pawin Chamniptasart led several thousands of Buddhist in a 11-kilometre march on foot from Chiang Mai University to the top of Wat Doi Suthep last night at about 9 pm in preparation for the morning alm offering to monks today on the mountain.