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At the end of the 3-month rains retreat monks are allowed to move from place to place, and are eligible to receive new robes in an annual presentation ceremony called Thot Kathin.
Our local temple Wat Greensboro held Thot Kathin last Sunday. It was a beautiful Autumn day and we had a good turnout.
Besides new robes, we are also allowed to make financial contributions, building materials and other items are also presented to monks on this special occasion. Thon Kathin or the money trees that the Buddhist worshippers joined in and hung their monies to be donated to the temple as part of the Kathin offering.
Kong Boun was also presented to the monks.
Morning Alms giving.
The tradition gets passed down from generation to generation.
The foods offering to the monks.
Food offering to passed loved one.
The parade for Hare Kathin Samakee where the Buddhist worshipers brought gifts, food, and yellow ropes to the monks.
As you can see that it’s very festive if you watched the video.
The presentation of Kathin.
I always looked forward to shopping for fresh fruits and vegetables.
There was a live band.
Sunday I attended a Buddhist ceremony at one of the temples in Charlotte, NC, quiet a bit drive from our house. This ceremony is called Bung Sa Goun, which is a memorial service ceremony in remembrance of the passed loved one and in this ceremony, two families held the ceremony together, one family was for their father, and his son and daughter in-law, and another family was for their uncle.
What is unique about this ceremony is that there are four beds (one for each deceased person) that are called Gong Bung and on them contain items that we want our passed loved ones to have in their afterlife. The Buddhist believe that in the spiritual world, our passed loved ones still use these items, we want them to have the necessities of the daily life convenient such as pillow, blanket, plates and bowls, and other items. As for item of personal clothing article, many would also offer this, but ask to get it back by offering donation called Busar, and the monetary amount offered is up to the offered because there is no set amount.
Meal is also offered to the deceased, this is called Pra Kao Thip.
I’ve been working hard in my garden, but my trees don’t look anything like this, might be because I water my trees with water (Nom in Lao language), but I do wish that I have a money tree at home. The money tree here is called Tonh Ga La Pirk, this would give friends and families the opportunity to Tum Boun (merit making) with the host families, offering their money by hanging it on the tree, this tree is obviously watered with Nom Jai, water that came from the heart (Jai). The money is then donated to the temple.
One of the good things about living in Laos is that the local Wat (temple) is within a walking distance, I can’t say the same here in the United States. We have so many temples here in North Carolina, but all are about 45 minutes to 1.50 hours drive, as for this one, Wat Greensboro is about 1 hours and 25 minutes drive for us.
We had a good turn out, this is the line for morning Almsgiving.
Jaydee Cide or sand stupas are still very fascinating to me. As for this year, my wish is still the same as last year, when I built the Jaydee Cide, I made a wish and donated the good merits for my mom that is no longer with us.