Vocabulary

Learn New Words FAST with this Lesson’s Vocab Review List

Get this lesson’s key vocab, their translations and pronunciations. Sign up for your Free Lifetime Account Now and get 7 Days of Premium Access including this feature.

Or sign up using Facebook
Already a Member?

Lesson Transcript

Culture Class: Holidays in Thailand, Lesson 5 – Loy Krathong Day
Hello, and welcome to the Culture Class- Holidays in Thailand Series at ThaiPod101.com. In this series, we’re exploring the traditions behind Thai holidays and observances. I’m Eric, and you're listening to Season 1, Lesson 5, Loy Krathong Day. In Thai, it’s called วันลอยกระทง (wan laauy grà-thong).
In this lesson, we're going to discuss Loy Kratong Day, which is another important day in Thailand. This tradition has been carried on since the Sukhothai Era. It’s held on the fifteenth day of the waxing moon in the twelfth lunar month of the traditional Thai calendar. It usually falls in November, according to the international calendar. Therefore, the Loy Kratong date is not fixed. It varies every year depending on the full moon or พระจันทร์เต็มดวง (phrá-jan dtem duuang).
You must be interested by now. If you're ready, let’s listen.
Now, before we get into more detail, do you know the answer to this question-
In the past, before the Loy Kratong Festival, Thai people would float something other than leaf bowls. Do you know what they were?
If you don't already know, you’ll find out a bit later. Keep listening.
In principle, there are two major beliefs that form the origins of Loy Kratong Day. The first one is to worship Lord Buddha as he preached in Nakapipob (the land of Naga) and left his footprints by a river bank. The second is to worship the Khongkha Goddess, the goddess of the river, to thank her for providing water. In the past, towns were traditionally built near rivers or แม่น้ำ (mâae náam), as people relied on water for their living. This activity can remind us of responsible usage of water, like not wasting it and not contaminating it with waste.
From this long-held belief, people have designed a bowl as a symbol for worship. To build the bowl or กระทง (grà-thong), materials that float on the water are used, including banana trunks, banana leaves, and coconut shells, and these are decorated beautifully with flowers, joss sticks, candles, and other worship items. More recently, there have been variations and modifications on the materials used to make the bowl, including bread bowls and paper bowls which have better biodegradability and environmental friendliness. There are even competitions for building the bowls. And traders who want their items to be attractive design new bowls every year.
The Loy Kratong Festival is held on the night of a full moon. At dawn, people begin to bring their bowls to the river bank. Before floating them, they light the candles, ask for forgiveness, and ask for blessings and success. After that, they float the bowl on the river. People also often put money or เงิน (ngoen) in their bowls in the belief that this can serve to worship the Khongkha goddess. In several places, there are Kratong bowl competitions, parades, entertainment, parties, and also fireworks celebrations.
The four components of the bowl are also symbols of Buddhism. The first, the candle, is a symbol of knowledge and wisdom. The second, the Joss stick, is a symbol of purity and sympathy. The third, the flower, represents worship of monks who are disciples of Buddha. And the fourth, the worshipping item, is used to make an offering to deceased ancestors.
Now it's time to answer our quiz question-
In the past, before the Loy Kratong Festival, Thai people floated something other than leaf bowls. Do you know what they were?
In the past, people actually floated lanterns during the Loy Kratong Festival. The hypothesis is that this was a Brahmin ceremony inherited from India. Then, Miss Noppamas, a chief concubine of a king long ago, saw a lotus that bloomed on a full moon day in the twelfth month. She had the idea to build a bowl to give to the king. The king was very happy and commanded that the bowl be floated instead of the lantern.
So listeners, how did you like this lesson? Did you learn anything interesting?
Had you heard of this festival before?
Leave us a comment telling us at ThaiPod101.com!
And I’ll see you in the next lesson!

7 Comments

Hide
Please to leave a comment.
😄 😞 😳 😁 😒 😎 😠 😆 😅 😜 😉 😭 😇 😴 😮 😈 ❤️️ 👍

ThaiPod101.com Verified
Monday at 06:30 PM
Pinned Comment
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Had you heard of this festival before?

 

ThaiPod101.com Verified
Friday at 12:31 AM
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hello khun Richard,


Thank you very much for your comment and question. Will be best if you could have someone write it down in Thai character.

"Jimmy" is like an English given name. "chimmy" I'm not sure but "chim" in Thai means "to taste (food)".


Talk to you soon.


Parisa

Team ThaiPod101.com

Richard Creaser
Thursday at 03:16 AM
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hello Parida


There is a word that I hear a lot in Thai but when I ask what it means my Thai family won't give me a straight answer.

The word sounds like 'jimmy' or 'chimmy'. I would be so grateful to understand what it means.

I am rapidly approaching my 67th birthday and my main issue in learning Thai is remembering the words. I try to use new words as often as I can so that they become imprinted on my memory.

I agree with you the firework display was spectacular. I managed to video the last part of it.


Kind regards

Richard

ThaiPod101.com Verified
Wednesday at 09:15 PM
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hello Richard,


Thank you very much for your kind sharing with us. I'm glad you have a good time. I think others who read your comment will inspire to visit Thailand during Loy Krathong. ? I was at iron bridge on the Ping river bank last year, fire work was really beautiful. I floated a gra-tong and few lanterns late at night. It's was fun as always for me. :)

Let me know if you have any questions about Thai language. I will be glad to help. We wish you will have a good progress with Thai.

Thanks again and hope you have a great day.


Parisa

Team ThaiPod101.com

Richard Creaser
Wednesday at 02:05 AM
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Sawatdii khrap Parisa,


I was very happy to see Loy Kratong for the first time in Chiang Mai. Hundreds upon hundreds of lanterns were released, it was quite a spectacle. We bought a Kratong but were unable to get near the 'launching' area on the river, there were so many holiday makers crowding around. We left it floating in a fire bucket at the hotel! My wife has a house in Bangkok and I will retire there on 28th March so in 2018 it is likely that we will see it on the Chao Phraya river which is a good deal bigger than the Ping river in Chiang Mai. I would advise anyone to take part in Loy Kratong there is a wonderful atmosphere.


Sawatdii khrap Richard

ThaiPod101.com Verified
Wednesday at 01:28 AM
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hello Richard,


Thank you very much for your comment and shared. Thank you very much for your comment ans shared. How was your experience with the festival? Do you like it? Does it different from what you expected? Please kindly share with us. :)

Let me know if you have any questions about Thai language. I will be glad to help. We wish you will have a good progress with Thai. Thanks again for your support.

Have a great day.


Parisa

Team ThaiPod101.com

Richard Creaser
Tuesday at 01:53 AM
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Yes I have heard of it before. My wife, who is Thai, and I stayed in Chiang Mai for Loy Krathong in 2017.