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Thursday, December 6, 2012

Lanna Crafts XXI

Lanna Cultures & Traditions (cont.):
The next significant tradition of Lanna is the New Year festival, or Songkran festival in Thai word, or Pee Mai Muang festival in Lanna word. The New Year Festival of Lanna People is set in April (as same as other Thai regions) or the seventh month of Lanna calendar.
Lanna Crafts - Pee Mai Muang festival
Picture of Pee Mai Muang festival
Pee Mai Muang is a movement or change to a new era which is the first moving of the sun into Aries. So they set April to be the first month of the year. The theme of Pee Mai Muang is based on the belief of the new era which is an opportunity for family members to gather to make a merit, and/or sprinkle water onto a Buddha image, and/or pour water on the hands of revered elders and ask for blessing, and/or splash water to each other (children and young peoples). These activities are to express goodwill on peace and happiness.

Pee Mai Muang festival of Lanna is different from Songkran festival in other regions of Thailand on the duration of the festival (more days than other regions), the activities, the beliefs and the purpose.

According to typical Songkran festival, there will be 3 days of activities as follows:

  • April 13 will be ‘Sangkharn-Long day’: After midnight of April 12, it will be sounds of wood knockings, firecrackers, gun shootings for sending or expelling the Sangkharn (there are so many meanings of this word for this festival, but the one is the sun or age, to cross over to the new age). Today members of family will clean all areas their home.
  • April 14 will be ‘Naw day’: Today the sun will move to the point between the end of Pisces and the start of Aries. Everyone will prepare supplies and foods to make a merit on tomorrow, they will speak good words to each other, no damning or scolding.
  • April 15 will be ‘Phayawan day’: Today the sun will cross into Aries which the Lanna year number will be changed. Lanna people will wake up early in the morning to go to the temple to make the merit. Today they will have an opportunity to sprinkle water onto a Buddha image which every temple will prepare by setting the Buddha image for easy access at the middle of temple. And they might pour water on the hands of revered elders and ask for blessing today.
  1. Nowadays Thai people favor to splash water to each other (children and young peoples) in these three days.
  2. Pee Mai Muang festival especially adds more 4 days than Songkran festival, there are ‘Pak-pee’, ‘Pak-duan’, ‘Pak-wan’, ‘Pak-yarm’ days. The main purpose of these days is for Lanna people to travel to worship Buddha images at long distance temple, or go to meet the elder cousins who live far away to pour water on their hands and ask for blessing then.
Today recommended Crafts/Handmade Products:

- ‘Hair Tie Hair Accessories Made From Fabric’ From Lannathaiexport:
    Lanna Crafts - Hair Tie Hair Accessories Made From Fabric
    Hair Tie Hair Accessories Made from Fabric
  • This handmade item is from fabric / pompom
  • Model: HA011
  • Dimensions: .44 pounds

(To be continued)

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