Priyanshi Pareek reports on the recent news of Thailand sending soil to Ayodhya..
The soil is being sent from the city of Ayutthaya which is 3,500 km away from Ayodhya. This act follows the earlier gesture of sending water from two rivers in Thailand to Ayodhya.
Thailand said it has a deep cultural connection with India. Kings belong to Lord Ram’s descendants. A famous city in Thailand was known as Ayutthaya, where its kings bore the title of ‘Ramatibodhi’.
It’s fascinating how Ayutthaya’s historical ties to the Kingdom of Siam and its significance as an economic hub connect with contemporary gestures like sending items to the Ram Mandir in Ayodhya. This recent act echoes a prior gesture of sending water from Thai rivers for the temple, highlighting the enduring cultural bonds between Thailand and India, which seem poised to strengthen even more in the future.
The collaborative efforts of Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) and Susheelkumar Saraff, President of VHP’s Thailand chapter, have paved the way for these meaningful exchanges.
Swami Vigyanananand, the founder and global chairman of the World Hindu Foundation (WHF), emphasized the profound cultural and historical connections between India and Thailand. He highlighted the intriguing lineage of several Thai kings being descendants of Lord Ram and carrying the tradition of including “Ram” in their names—a practice that echoes the enduring ties between the two nations.
Swami Vigyanananand shared that Bangkok, the capital of Thailand, holds a rich Hindu cultural heritage and highlighted plans for 51 countries to witness Lord Ram’s consecration in Ayodhya.
As the chief organizer of the World Hindu Congress, he mentioned the live telecast of the ceremony in Bangkok, anticipating the global convergence of Hindus engaging in kirtans, bhajans, puja, and recitations.
Additionally, preparations include ordering prasad from Ayodhya, constructing a replica of the Ayodhya temple, and bringing an image of Ram Lalla’s birthplace, which will be distributed among all the delegates.
Ayutthaya’s connection with Lord Rama
Ayutthaya, a renowned city in Thailand, held a significant historical link as its kings were titled ‘Ramatibodhi’ or “Lord Rama.” This city’s association with Ayodhya, mentioned as Lord Rama’s capital in the Ramayana, adds depth to its cultural narrative. Serving as the capital for Siamese rulers from 1351 AD, Ayutthaya faced near-total destruction due to Burmese forces in 1767.
In Thai religious literature, the Ramkeen stands as a significant text akin to the Thai Ramayana. Ramanujan, author of ‘300 Ramayana,’ has drawn comparisons between Ramkeen and Valmiki’s Ramayana. Believed to have been composed by King Rama I in the 18th century, the book’s primary antagonist, Thotsakan, resembles the Hindu text’s Lankan king, Ravana. It showcases the ideals of Ram through its protagonist, Phra Ram.
Deeper cultural similarities between India and Thailand
The cultural parallels between India and Thailand extend further. Just as India celebrates Kartik Purnima and Dev Diwali, Thailand observes the ‘Loy Krathong’ festival, akin to India’s Diwali, as a significant festival of lights. This vibrant celebration is enthusiastically embraced across Thailand. During Loy Krathong, idols of Lord Shiva, Parvati, Ganesha, and Indra are prominently installed for people to worship, adding a spiritual dimension to the festivity.