Christmas and Buddhism Meet in Bangkok

Source: International Herald Tribune

http://www.iht.com/articles/2004/11/30/opinion/rthai.html

On November 27, 2004 International Herald Tribune ran a feature article/opinion piece , “At every turn in this ancient citadel of Buddhist culture [Bangkok, Thailand], a visitor is struck by the contrast of non-material ascetism and material delight.

This is especially the case when White Christmas arrives through the airwaves of tropical Bangkok’s department stores in November and images of frosty snowmen and Santas appear in the humid shadows of the city’s Buddhist temples…

But in the seeming clash of purpose, it is possible to find an overlap, a way of appreciating both sides of Thailand: try putting a little Buddhism into Christmas or Hannukah. A token of Buddha’s teaching this holiday season may inspire thoughts of how transitory worldly happiness can be and how necessary the ideals of compassion, sharing and generosity are.”