Blessing a new house in Thailand

Blessing a new house in Thailand begins with the raising of the main post and placing in into the ground. The idea behind it is that blessing the house from the very beginning of its construction creates an auspicious occurrence, and therefore, the residents will live in serenity, prosperity, and happiness.

There are many caveats about building a new home or business, but one of the most important is the astrological prohibitions. Never start building a house on Sunday, Tuesday, and especially not on a Saturday. Should construction begin on any of these days, the owner will have nothing but trouble. Further, construction should begin during an even-numbered month, or the ninth month, as nine is a lucky number.

It is not exactly clear where these beliefs and rituals originate. There is some confusion about whether they were part of a Brahmin practice or a Buddhist practice. Nonetheless, the blessings and ceremonies have been practiced for hundreds of years.

According to some sources, the blessing of the post began as a Brahmin ritual, but as time passed, other features were added, such as invoking occult powers and Buddhism. In today’s world, since both the Brahmin priests and the Buddhist monks want the owner to experience good luck, they often plan the blessings together. Who conducts the blessing is up to the owner.

If the owner chooses Buddhist monks to bless his building, there should be two, three, five, or best of all, nine of them. Merit can be made if the blessing time is close to the monk’s mealtime, and merit can be made by feeding them. This must be done before midday, as monks do not eat after that time.

The New House Ceremony

Certain items are needed for the ceremony including two tables covered with white tablecloths. A smaller table will hold two flower vases, two candlesticks, and an incense holder. The larger table will hold holy water, coins, sand, and food offerings. Also required are white paste for anointing, a pencil for writing on the post, garlic to rub on the post to adhere a gold leaf, and leaves for sprinkling holy water.

The next part of the ceremony deals with choosing the post. The post should be free of knots, be from a tree that has grown straight, and be free of disease, pests, or anything else that would make it weak.

An oracle is consulted to ensure the timing of raising the post is auspicious. The priest or monk then anoints the post with white paste, adheres the leaf, sprinkles holy water, and then blows sand on the post, to cast a spell of good luck.

The owner lights the candles and the incense, making a wish for good luck, and then makes a food offering.

The priest or monk places different objects in the post-hole including sand, holy water, gold, silver, flowers, candles, and incense to bring blessings to the house. While the post is being hoisted, a gong is struck two or three times, a Brahmin custom to alert the public that a new building is to be erected.

There are many variations to performing this ceremony, but the main objective is to give the owners confidence that they will not be bothered by evil spirits and that their building will be a source of happiness and good fortune.