Sat Thai

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Sat Thai (also: Sart Thai , official name: Thai วัน สาร ท ไทย - Wan Sat Thai) is a traditional festival that is celebrated in Thailand on the new moon day at the end of the 10th month in the Thai lunar calendar . However, it is not a public holiday.

Word origin

Sat (also: Sart; Thai: ศารท , สาร ท or สา ท ) comes from the Pali word sārada, which means season or autumn. It refers to the time "when the grain fills the ear".

regional customs

Until the 1930s, the Pithi Sart (Thai: พิธี ศารท ) was a royal ceremony that was celebrated exclusively within the royal palace .

It goes back to a Brahmin harvest festival (harvest festival), which was supposedly introduced by Nang Noppamat, a playmate of King Ramkhamhaeng . During the Ayutthaya and early Bangkok periods , the ceremony was carried out as follows:

  1. During the three-day festival, the monks in the royal monasteries recite special texts for the welfare of the king and the kingdom.
  2. In a pavilion in the palace garden, Brahmanic priests offer sacrifices to the Hindu gods.
  3. For Khao Thip (Thai: ข้าวทิพย์ - mixing the “Heavenly Rice”, ie food for the gods) eight more pavilions will be built in the palace garden. Each pavilion is surrounded by a so-called “Rachawat fence” with multi-level screens to ward off evil influences. In the four corners there are Devatā statues, to which candles and incense are offered at the beginning.
  4. In the middle of each pavilion there is a pan about 1 meter in size. 32 young women of the royal family fill the ingredients for Heavenly Rice and mix them. In addition to rice, the ingredients also consist of other grains grown in the kingdom, such as fruits, juices, honey, milk, butter and water.
  5. While the young women stir the mixture with large wooden spoons, some monks recite from the sacred texts.
  6. Then the king reads out a proclamation in which all those present are asked to devote themselves to their tasks in a spirit of kindness and charity. The proclamation ends with the wish that faith in the Buddha , his teachings and the Buddhist order ( Sangha ) will bring health and happiness. Blessings for the prosperity of the kingdom are then offered.
  7. The finished food is distributed to the king, the royal family and officials, to the spirits of the dead and to the monks on the following days.

Today this mixture is called Kraya-Thip (Thai: กระยาทิพย์ , also Kraya-Sart - กระยาสารท ). It's a candy made from rice, sugar cane syrup, honey, peanuts, and / or sesame seeds. It is made especially for the Sart Thai festival.

Today's meaning

The original meaning of the celebration as a harvest festival has been lost over the centuries. Today the Sart Thai festival is celebrated almost exclusively in rural Thailand. Today is a day to commemorate the deceased relatives and an opportunity for Tham Bun (Thai: ทำบุญ ). Pictures of the deceased at home or the pictures attached to the urn graves of the deceased are cleaned and decorated with fresh flower garlands. Candles and incense sticks are lit in front of the pictures, then there is a prayer and a wai is used to say goodbye to the deceased. Also in the wat the dead are remembered with common prayers.


  • HG Quaritch Wales: Siamese State Ceremonies. London 1931, Reprint by Curzon Press, Richmond 1992, ISBN 0-7007-0269-5

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