The original Siamese twins of Thailand

The first reported occurrence of conjoined twins was in Thailand, thus the name “Siamese Twins”. Born in 1811 to a peasant family living in the small village of Samut Songkhram, their parents named them Eng and Chang (translated into English means “left and “right”). The boys were incredibly athletic and agile, capable of doing all manner of things together. Continue reading The original Siamese twins of Thailand

Elephants in Thai Culture

In Thai culture, elephants (chang Thai) play an important role. Revered in Thailand for centuries, kings sat atop them in the 300 year war against the Burmese. All of the Thai kings had a stable of white elephants. As the strongest beast of burden on the planet, they play an important part in Thai’s logging industry. Elephants also have a great deal of spiritual significance to Hindus and Buddhists. Continue reading Elephants in Thai Culture

Thai postage stamps depict Thailand’s culture and history

The postage stamps in Thailand depict various aspects in Thai culture, using as subjects everything from children playing folk games to his Majesty the King, Bhumibol Adulyadej. As in all cultures, many stamps are uniquely artistic and informative, and are treasured by stamp collectors.

The following describes the cultural history behind some of Thailand’s most interesting stamps. Continue reading Thai postage stamps depict Thailand’s culture and history

The meaning and use of Chinese fortune sticks in Thai Buddhist temples

As you travel around Thailand, you will likely visit several Buddhist temples. In many of the Thai Buddhist temples, you will see Chinese fortune sticks, traditionally referred to as kau cim or chien tung. Chinese fortune sticks are a type of fortune telling practice, with origins in China. It was later brought to Thailand with the influx of Chinese immigrants. Many people in Thailand have a great deal of faith in fortune telling, no matter what their economic or social status is. Continue reading The meaning and use of Chinese fortune sticks in Thai Buddhist temples