The majority of the Thai people are ardent Buddhists who celebrate the frequent Buddhist holidays with fervor.
According to Buddhist belief, the most important days of the year are Makhabuja Day, Visakhabuja Day and Asarnhabuja Day. These major Buddhist holy days are also national holidays.
Makhabuja Day falls on the full moon of the third lunar month. It is to commemorate the day when 1,250 disciples, all ordained by the Lord Buddha himself, gathered together to hear the Buddha preach, all without prior arrangement.
Visakhabuja Day falls on the full moon of the sixth lunar month. It is to commemorate the day when the Lord Buddha was born, reached enlightenment, and entered nirvana.
All happened on the same day of the year. Visakhabuja Day is considered the holiest day in the Buddhist calendar.
Asarnhabuja Day falls on the eighth lunar month. It commemorates the day when the Lord Buddha delivered his first sermon to the first five disciples.
These ceremonies were initiated by former monarchs. The ceremonies usually begin with offerings of food to monks in the morning, the strict observation of the Buddhist Canons among lay people, and a candle light ceremony in the evening.
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