Thursday, September 26, 2013

Spirit Houses of Thailand

Thailand is a land of rich traditions and spirituality. Their deep belief in Theravada Buddhism is one of the main reasons, Thailand is a religious nation. Take their spirit houses for an example. You can see them in front of nearly every building in Thailand. Some of them are ornate, while the others are simple. Some of them are large, but the others are small. But, whatever their shape, size or design, they exist almost everywhere.

Spirit houses of Thailand
Now, you may ask, why do people construct spirit houses in front of every building. The reason is that before someone occupies a piece of lands and builds something on it, they have to build a spirit house for the spirits currently living in that piece of land. By building this spirit house and by giving them offerings, they are apparently taking their permission to build on their land.

Spirit House in front of a Thai Home, Bangkok
This allows the human occupants and the spirits to co-exist happily on the same piece of land. As part of this tradition, one can see a lot of offerings like incense sticks, fruits, rice, flowers and vegetables in front of the spirit houses. These offerings are made on a daily basis and it is believed that it is their duty to take care of their house spirits and in return the spirits will take care of them.

Spirit House outside Taling Chan Floating Market, Bangkok
As far as I have seen, these spirit houses are kept in direct connection with the natural elements, which means they get ample sunshine, moonlight and rain. I have heard some local Thai people mention that it is unlucky for the house to keep the spirit house in the shade, though I am not sure of the reasoning behind it. These spirit houses are a small example of the depth of Thai culture and their Buddhist beliefs, making it a fantastic country for a culture seeking traveler.

Welcome to BE ON THE ROAD Travel Blog! I am Sankara, its founder, a 30 something male from Bangalore who is living his dream of exploring the world and simultaneously trying to inspire others to live their dream.
Wanna live your dream? Find Some inspiration here!
Wanna know more about me?
Track blog updates from facebook and/or twitter!

Logo Credits : Jobi T Chacko. UI/UX Credits : Murugan S Thirumalai
Copyright © 2009-2016 Sankara Subramanian C (
Reproduction without explicit permission is prohibited. All Rights Reserved

Join the Travel Club for FREE!!
and every fortnight get in your inbox...interesting experiential and off-beat travel stories , destination guides, handy tips (travel, photography and visa) based on personal experience, global vegetarian delights with helpful survival guides and gorgeous world travel images and videos as I (the Indian traveler) trot the globe! And a lot of other travel invites and soon to be launched goodies !

* indicates required