BTLEW Lesson 3 - Message of the Land Part Two ENTER
BTLEW Lesson 3 - Message of the Land I. AuthorAuthor II. BangkokBangkok III. Thai BuddhismThai Buddhism IV. Monks in ThailandMonks in Thailand Background Information
BTLEW Pira Sudham is considered Thailand's leading English language writer, who was nominated for the 1990 Nobel Prize for Literature. His literary works are concerned with social-economic- political changes occurring in Thailand. Widely read and highly acclaimed, his books have given an expedient voice to the poor and the voiceless. Lesson 3 - Message of the Land I.Author The end of Author.
BTLEW Lesson 3 - Message of the Land II.Bangkok To be continued on the next page. Bangkok, population 8,538,610 (1990), is the capital and largest city of Thailand. The city is located on the east bank of the Chao Phraya River, near the Gulf of Thailand. Bangkok is one of the fastest-growing, most economically dynamic and socially progressive cities in Southeast Asia. Local people like to think that it is emerging as a regional centre to rival Singapore and Hong Kong (SAR), China, but it suffers from major infrastructure and social problems as a result of its rapid growth. It is also one of the world's most popular tourist destinations. Bangkok from the Chao Phraya River at sunset, July 2004
BTLEW Bangkok is the economic center of Thailand. The Chao Phraya River allows Bangkok to function as a port. The Stock Exchange of Thailand is located in Bangkok. Tourism is a major source of revenue. The city contains many Buddhist temples (known in Thai as Wats), among the best known being Wat Pho and Wat Arun. Lesson 3 - Message of the Land II.Bangkok To be continued on the next page. The Wat Phra Kaew Temple
BTLEW Bangkok's educational and cultural facilities include several universities, a fine arts academy, a national theater and a national museum. Processed food, timber, and textiles are leading exports. Industrial plants include rice mills, cement factories, sawmills, oil refineries, and shipyards. The city is a famous jewelry center, buying and selling silver and bronze ware. Lesson 3 - Message of the Land II.Bangkok The end of Bangkok.
BTLEW Lesson 3 - Message of the Land III. Thai Buddhism To be continued on the next page. Buddhism is Thailand's main religion. 94% of Thai people are Buddhist. The other are Muslim, Catholic or Chinese. Buddhism was born 2,546 years ago (the official year in Thailand is the year 2003 and the traditional year is the year 2546). Buddhism is linked with the historical Indian prince, Siddharta Gautama, who became the Buddha and reached the enlightenment. Now his teachings are still followed. His teachings say that people suffer because they are attached to material things, to women or men by heart links. These links cause suffer, jealousy so pain. People are never satisfied, i.e. they want more money, more power. The aim of Buddhism is to get rid of these pains and of these links. There are several kinds of Buddhism. Thai Buddhism is called Theravada Buddhism.
BTLEW Lesson 3 - Message of the Land III. Thai Buddhism The end of Thai Buddhism. Everyone can hope to reach enlightenment one day but path shall be long. It takes many lives. Each time somebody or an animal dies, it reincarnates in something else. It is the endless cycle of existence. The rebirth depends on your "KARMA". If you have done good deeds in your life, next life will be better. If you have done bad deeds, next life will be harsh. Thai Buddhism is fascinating because it is mixed with older religions (Animism, Brahmanism) which were present before the introduction of Buddhism in Thailand. Nowadays the influence of the previous religions is still present.
BTLEW Lesson 3 - Message of the Land IV. Monks in Thailand Monks are more suited to reach enlightenment because they follow a strict way of life far from material attachment. Their life is based on 227 monastic rules and 5 major precepts, i.e. no sex, no lies, no robbery, no alcohol, no killing. In a temple, some men have been monks for decades but there are also some men who became monk only a short time ago. They do it in order to bring merit to their parents ("THAM BUN"). A boy is not a man if he hasn't been a monk once in his life. Even the King of Thailand Rama 9 had been a monk for one month. In old days this period was three months. Now it can be only a few weeks or a few days. To be continued on the next page.
BTLEW Some families still refuse to marry their daughter if the future husband hasn't ever been a monk. It means that he isn't ripe enough. Ordination is an important part of life in Thai society. A boy that becomes a monk ("PHRA") for a few months is making a really good action towards his parents. Monks represent the Lord Buddha. When Thai people greet a monk or even a novice, they greet the Lord Buddha's teachings. In a bus, seats in the back are reserved to monks. If a woman is sitting there, she should leave because a woman cannot touch a monk. Lesson 3 - Message of the Land IV. Monks in Thailand The end of Monks in Thailand.
BTLEW Lesson 3 - Message of the Land Part Two This is the end of Part Two. Please click HOME to visit other parts. HOME