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  HOME | Society (Click here for more)

Thailand Begins Preparations of King Vajiralongkorn’s Coronation

BANGKOK – The preliminary rites of the coronation of the new King Vajiralongkorn of Thailand, who ascended to the throne in October 2017 after the death of his father King Bhumibo, kicked off on Saturday.

The new king’s proclamation is scheduled to take place between May 4-6.

The coronation will be consecrated by anointment, a ritual act of pouring aromatic oil over a person’s head or body, and crowning.

Officials in charge of the ritual, collected water for the purification ceremony of the coronation in a series of religious ceremonies that were broadcast live across the country.

The collection took place in more than 100 aquifers in Thailand between 11:52 am and 12:38 pm, timings that are considered auspicious by Thai astrologers.

The water, stored in traditional vases, will be blessed in Buddhist ceremonies in the most important temples in the country from April 8-9, before being combined in another consecration rite in Wat Suthat, one of the oldest temples in Bangkok, on the April 18.

Thailand also celebrated on Saturday the Chakri day in honor of the dynasty King Vajiralongkorn belongs to.

He will be named Rama X, as the 10th monarch of the Chakris.

The 66-year-old monarch will also have to recite several Buddhist verses during the coronation ceremonies.

Monarchy and Buddhism are two fundamental pillars of Thai society that see the king as a revered and almost divine figure.

However, Vajiralongkorn has lived a great part of his life abroad disconnected from the duties of the Crown and has not inherited the great popularity that his father enjoyed.

Since his ascension to the throne, Vajiralongkorn has strengthened his powers with the approval of several legal reforms that, among others, have placed the vast heritage of the Crown and several state agencies responsible for its security, under his sole authority.

Information on the Thai monarchy is a highly sensitive issue in the country due to the lèse-majesté law, which can impose three to 15 years in prison on those who criticize or make comments that are deemed insulting to the royal family.

 

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