“On our last night in Bangkok along the Chao Phraya River we were fortunate to celebrate in the Loi Krathong festivities. I was even lucky enough to make my own Krathong with a slice of the trunk of a banana tree, banana leaves, flowers, a candle, and incense, along side of a new friend, Eric Herder–a long time traveller, Mainer, and parent of a student who went to high school with our youngest son, Caleb–who we just happened to run into, and meet for the first time, in a small street-side restaurant! Talk about a small world!
The floating of the Krathong symbolizing letting go of hatred and anger seemed rather fitting for the recent political fallout back in the place we call home. As I set my Krathong free in to the river I made a wish, and felt the spiritual light and a much needed sense of calm just a few short hours before we boarded our plane back to the US of A. ” –Kim
Loi Krathong is a festival celebrated annually throughout southwestern Thai cultures, always on the evening of the full moon of the 12th month in the traditional Thai lunar calendar. The name can be translated as “to float a basket”, and comes from the tradition of making “Krathong” or buoyant, decorated baskets, which are then floated on a river. On the night of the full moon, Thais launch their Krathong on a river, canal or a pond, making a wish as they do so.
In each basket a candle is placed to honor the light of Buddha, while the Krathong’s floating symbolizes letting go of all one’s hatred, anger, and other negative emotions. People sometimes even cut their fingernails or hair and place the clippings on the Krathong as a symbol of letting go of past transgressions and negative thoughts. Many Thais use the Krathong to thank the Goddess of Water, the Hindu Goddess Ganga, and it is said that the festival may originate from an ancient ritual paying respect to the water spirits. It is a lovely and beautiful way to send out positive wishes to the world and let go of negativity and things that no longer serve!
The post POSTCARDS FROM PETE & KIM: LOI KRATHONG FESTIVAL IN BANGKOK, THAILAND appeared first on Mexicali Blues Blog.