Thailand Buddhism is the national religion, more
exactly, the Theravada Buddhism.
Practiced by more than 90% of the Thai, is influent,
significant and very visible in the every day
Regarding the Buddha’s personification, the Thais
created a special human type which is considered one
of the most suggestive expressions of the Asian art.
Regarding the ornaments, they copied the luxuriant
character of the tropical vegetation.
to other Buddhist nations that used the sculpture to
represent legends or myths, the Thais used this art
only to personify Buddha and to adorn the religious
Thailand, the Illuminate representation is unique:
often presented in the deep meditation mood, with
the bright face, familiar, with a halo, with
elongated ears or enlarged ears, with an urn (a sing
on the forehead representing the third eye of the
spiritual vision) and with ushinsha, a cranial
protuberance that represents the knowing. The places of
worship are called wat. To understand the importance of the
wat and the Buddhism’s influence in the Thai thinking is
necessary to understand the multifunctional character of the
monasteries and how much they help the ordinary people.
families form the rural areas feel unsafe thinking
to keep their goods in the house, so, they ask the
abbot to deposit them at monastery.
The wat deposits
documents and artefacts with historical significance
as well as numerous Buddha’s representations used
for the public veneration or as meditation objects.
travellers can be accommodated at monasteries over
night especially when they come to diverse
festivals; the children sent to school in Bangkok
can use them as homes, since their parents make
The boys help the monks at the daily
works and initiate themselves in the Buddhist
religion mysteries. The state’s functions
(elections, recruitments) exert in monasteries and
some of them serve as clinics. From the total
population of 60 million, 95% declared themselves
Buddhists, in general adepts of the Theravada
In Thailand, as
well as in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos, the Theravada
Buddhism is the most important religion.
type of Buddhism is different from the Mahayana
Buddhism practiced in Japan, Korea and China as well
as in the Hanoi region from Vietnam which has a long
history of the Chinese influence.
Theravada Buddhism is more influent compared with
the Mahayana version which is often interweaved with
the rigid Confucian doctrines. During the secular
Thai history, the education, considered the key
element of the national development and safety, was
exclusively in the Buddhist monks’ hands. When you
enter in a temple, you can’t be dressed like in a
normal vacation day. For Thais, the skirts, the
short pants and the sleeveless shirts are totally
inadequate to visit a temple.
The men are
being asked to not enter in short pants or sleeveless shirts
and the women to not wear pants and the skirts to not cross
the knees’ line. Also, you are not allowed to enter the
temple if you wear scuffs.