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Right before the festival, I found these young monks sitting under a bell in the Wat Phra Singh temple, chatting and laughing together.
Most monks in Thailand begin their monkhood as nain (novice under 20 years old) for a short period of time and usually observe only 10 Precepts (out of the 227):
1. Refrain from killing living things.
2. Refrain from stealing.
3. Refrain from un-chastity (sensuality, sexuality, lust).
4. Refrain from lying.
5. Refrain from taking intoxicants.
6. Refrain from taking food at inappropriate times (after noon).
7. Refrain from singing, dancing, playing music or attending entertainment programs.
8. Refrain from wearing perfume, cosmetics and garland (decorative accessories).
9. Refrain from sitting on high chairs and sleeping on luxurious, soft beds.
10. Refrain from accepting money.
Sometimes, dek wat (Children of the Wat) can also be encountered at the temples. They usually wear civilian clothes and their tasks consist of minor chores around the temple and studying.
The primary reason for becoming a dek wat is to gain a basic education, particularly in basic reading and writing and the memorization of the scriptures chanted on ritual occasions.
This comes from before there were any primary schools and village temples were also the primary form of education for young boys.
Things I love today:
The sight of a beautiful sunset
The smell of cumin
The taste of a Thanksgiving meal
The sound of Celtic Music
The feel of recovering from the flu
[EDIT]: Thanks to a few friends, I have corrected the information about dek wat and nain. Cheers!
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