Art, Music & Culture • Entertainment • Lifestyles
HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

Utakukkapasima ordination ceremony held to celebrate 9th King of Lanna

‘Zingdarella’ at CMU…a modern update of a much-loved fairy tale

Captain Crabtree Writes

 

Utakukkapasima ordination ceremony held to celebrate 9th King of Lanna

Siriporn Raweekoon
An ancient Buddhist ordination tradition dating from the time of the great 15th century Lanna king, Phra Chao Tilokarat, was reintroduced in Chiang Mai recently in honour of the 600th anniversary of the famous ruler’s year of birth.

Dr.Chao Duangduen na Chiengmai, pictured handed out begging bowls before the start of the ceremony.
On July 4, the ‘Utakukkapasima Ordination’ – a group ordination which takes place on a raft floating on water - was held on the Ping River opposite the Municipality offices, for 89 monks. The ceremony was organised by the Chiang Mai Buddhist Monks’ Association, the Provincial Administration and the Chiang Mai Cultural Office. Phra Raja Khemakorn, senior monk from the Association, acted as the novice monks’ preceptor; the Chiang Mai governor, Amornpan Nimanant, presided, and Dr. Chao Duangduen na Chiengmai was present as consultant for the ceremony. Phra Chao Tilokarat himself, in the 5th year of his reign, was ordained during an Utakukkapasima ceremony held on a raft moored at the Ping River landing point opposite Wat Katkaram.

Dr.Chao Duangduen na Chiengmai, (1st right), leader of the Chiang Mai Culture Council and consultant for the ceremony.

Traditionally, the floating raft used for the ceremony must be at least large enough to hold 21 monks, and a bridge must be provided to allow access. Once the ordinates and monks are assembled on the raft and before the ceremony begins, the bridge is removed. No family members, friends or relatives are allowed on the raft, as its separation from the shore is symbolic of the renouncing of all desires. Group ordination is undertaken to encourage the loyalty of new monks to the Sangha, the Buddhist community comprised of monks, although nowadays, in worldwide Buddhism, lay Buddhists as well as monks are considered to constitute the Sangha community.

The ordinants, pictured seated holding their begging bowls,
 before the group ceremony began.

The ‘Chiang Mai Chronicle’, a history of Lanna written on palm leaf manuscripts, probably begun in the 15th century, and enlarged every time it was copied, records Phra Chao Tilokarat, (his name means ‘God of the Three Worlds), as the 9th Lanna king.He is remembered and revered as the ruler who, during his reign from 1441- 1487, contributed to and presided over the ‘Golden Age of Lanna’. As well as reforming and developing the Kingdom’s administrative system, he was committed to advancement of the Buddhist faith, which blossomed during his reign. He ordered the completion of Wat Chedi Luang, which had been founded in 1401 by his grandfather, King San Muang Ma, but never completed. Wat Jed Yod, one of the oldest and most revered temples in Chiang Mai, was built on Tilokarat’s orders, modelled on the design of the Buddhagaya shrine in India. In 1455, before building commenced, a cutting was taken from the holy Bodhi tree growing in Ceylon, (itself grown from a cutting of the original tree under which the Buddha became enlightened), and planted at the site of the new temple.
In 1477, Phra Chao Tilokarat convened the 8th Buddhist Council, which met for a period of 1 year at Wat Jed Yod to review and revise the Tripitaka, the Buddhist canon and teachings. The revised version which resulted has, sadly, been lost. Tilokarat was also responsible, in 1468, for the installation of the Phra Kaew Marakot, (the famous and most revered Emerald Buddha), at Wat Chedi Luang, where it remained until its removal to Laos, then to Thon Buri, and subsequently, in 1884, to Wat Phra Kaew in Bangkok. The great king died in 1487; his ashes are believed to have been placed under the largest Chedi at Wat Jed Yod, one of 3 remaining of the original 7.

Ordinants pictured walking across the temporary bridge to the floating raft where their ordination was to take place.

 

‘Zingdarella’ at CMU…a modern update of a much-loved fairy tale

Elena Edwards
A modern update of the famous children’s fairy tale, Cinderella, will be performed by Chiang Mai University’s Faculty of Humanities’ English department’s English Club on July 17, 18 and 19 at the Faculty of Humanities building.
The 21st-century interpretation of the ‘happy-ever-after’ tale will, however, have a very different theme – it will concentrate on the distinctions between real life and fairy tales in the real world, and on how recognition of one’s true self can be successfully achieved without glass slippers and handsome princes!
‘Zingderella’ tells the story of Nicky, a poor Chinese girl who is mistreated by her stepmother and her stepsisters. At this point, however, the tale changes. Although Nicky does believe in magic and dreams of imitating the girl in the fairy tale, she takes her life into her own hands, and runs away with her friend, Prince. They decide to travel to Hong Kong and get jobs at the Disneyland fantasy park, but, very soon, Nicky realises that real life is not as easy as life in a fairy tale. Her disappointment encourages her to recognise her true self and to work towards becoming a real-life Cinderella success story without the help of charming prices and glass slippers! But…will she be able to cope with the necessary changes, and will her life indeed become more rewarding? Come and find out…
Performances begin at 7 p.m. on July 17 and 18, and at 2 p.m. on the 19th. Tickets are 39 baht, with students admitted free. For more information and ticket reservations, please call Surang Suwat on 081-036-9927.


Captain Crabtree Writes

Archie James
Captain Crabtree continues to come to terms with Life in Chiang Mai….

On the first day I met her, my new love asked of me –
A dinner at the Chedi.

On the second day I met her, my new love asked of me –
Two diamond ear-rings
And a dinner at the Chedi.

On the third day I met her, my new love asked of me –
A job for her brother,
Two diamond ear-rings
And a dinner at the Chedi.

On the fourth day I met her, my new love asked of me –
A house for her mother,
A job for her brother,
Two diamond ear-rings
And a dinner at the Chedi.

On the fifth day I met her, my new love asked of me –
Five gold rings,
House for her mother,
Job for her brother,
Two diamond ear-rings
And a dinner at the Chedi.

On the sixth day, the other bar girls said she’d gone back to Pattaya.