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Fine Arts Department, Ministry of Culture  
Restoration of retro lifestyle in Thod Kathin, Sukhothai
2-3 November 2013, at Wat Phra Phai Luang, Aranyik Area, Sukhothai 

    Sukhothai is an ancient city with historical significance of Siam in the 19th- 20th Buddhist era, as appearing the historical and archaeological evidence that it is the center city in the lower north of Thailand. There is a lot of evidence as the condition of ancient city, architecture, arts in form of ancient remains and ruins which are unique so that it was recognized by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage in 1991 and 2003, recognizing the 1st stone inscription of King Ramkhamhaeng as the Memory of the World Register.

    Based on the evidence presented in the first stone inscription of King Ramkhamhaeng, it reflected in lifestyle and cultures of Sukhothai people, where Buddhism was an origin of cultures of Sukhothai people such as

    ".... People in Sukhothai like to give alms and offering dedicated to monks. King Ramkhamhaeng, palace people and ordinary people all have faith in Buddhism. They will observe religious precepts during the Buddhist Lent. And at the end of Buddhist Lent, they will held Thod Kathin ceremony to offer offering dedicated to monks, offer flower tray, silver and golden tray, pillow and two million cowries of money to offer Kathin and offering at temples in the jungle. Throughout the city, there will be drumming, music paying, singing, and rhythm of prose joyfully.....  

                These texts reflect the traditions of Sukhothai people after the Buddhist Lent, holding the procession and Thod Kathin ceremony at forest temples in Aranyik area. These cultural capitals can be spent to restore the atmosphere of the past back to be alive again. In addition to promotion of Buddhism, it also adds value with creative cultures and promotes tourism to the local.

     Therefore, Ministry of Culture, by the Department of Fine Arts, holds an activity of restoring the retro lifestyle in Thod Kathin ceremony in Sukhothai period according to the project of Cultural City for Tourism (Sukhothai and acropolis) to promote tourism during Thod Kathin festival 2013 at Wat Phra Phai Luang, Aranyik Area, Sukhothai Province during 2-3 November 2013 in order to restore the lifestyle, cultures, continue the traditions of Sukhothai, promote Buddhism and create the learning process by organizing the activity of retro Thod Kathin ceremony backing to Sukhothai period. This will be commenced from 2 November 2013 at 12:59 hr. There will be a retro Kathina procession with the processions and Kathin offerings as noted in the 1st stone inscription, including the Mangla Luang procession, royal Kathin fabric procession, procession of retinue Kathin offerings consisting of person inviting four pairs of joss-sticks and candles, tray of cowries, tray of betel palms, tray of flows, and worshipers in white clothes, holding lotus, to be offered to the temples, procession of seat cushions, pillows, and tom-tom procession from Pu Pha Dam Shrine, the east gate of Sukhothai, bringing royal Kathin fabric and retinue Kathin offerings, and the Kathina for celebrating at a pavilion of Wat Phra Phai Luang, then there will be a seminar to learn about the religion, beliefs and traditions in Sukhothai period to create learning process and knowledge related to the retro Thod Kathin back to Sukhothai period by Phra Ajan Kriangkrai Saphatharo of Wat Phra Phai Luang, Mr. Prachote Sungkhanukij, the former director of the Office of Archaeology and National Museum, Mr. Somboon Deesamer, the Director of the Office of Buddhism, Sukhothai Province, operated by Mrs. Nongkran Suksom, the Director of Sukhothai Historical Park, at multi-purpose building at Wat Phra Phai Luang. And then, in the evening, there will be a cultural performance, mini light & sound, at the area of ancient remains of Wat Phra Phai Luang.

     On 3 November 2013, at 8.00hr, there will be the procession of royal Kathina fabric and retinue Kathin offerings moving from a sermon hall (in a monastery) to the temple to perform the Thod Kathin ceremony at Wat Phra Phai Luang.

     Those interested can get more information at Sukhothai Historical Park, Sukhothai Office of Fine Arts 6, Fine Arts Department, Ministry of Culture, Tel: 0 5569 7310 , 0 5569 7527, Website: www.finearts.go.th.  

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