July 27 Marks The Start of the Rain Retreat Period for Buddhist Monks
Tuesday 27 July 2010
Tuesday is known as Wan Khao Phansa, and starts the interlude during which monks “retreat” from the world and devote their time to study and meditation. This is after the grand finale Monday night of Asarnha Bucha day, one of the three most important Buddhist holidays in Thailand. Throngs of Thai Buddhists visited temples around town to present offerings, listen to sermons, and participate in candlelit processions three times around the sacred grounds. Asarnha Bucha is the day when Buddha offered his first sermon and welcomed his first followers, and is considered to be the “birthday” of Buddhism.
Wan Khao Phansa, on Tuesday, is known as the beginning of Buddhist Lent. For ordinary Thais, this is a time when they may give up a certain vice, or perhaps several, and all are encouraged to be on their best behavior on this significant occasion. Perhaps if the Thais can encourage foreign residents to be mindful of this as well, all of Pattaya could benefit from a day devoted to good manners and right thinking!
Source: Pattaya People